Friday, July 25, 2014

The Impact Of Your Influence

We are exposed to various situations in life, and no two of us have ones that are exactly the same.  Even if you follow the same schedule or have the same job or tend to hang out with the same people, the experiences and feelings that you have about them are going to be different, because each of us is unique. 

Every person that we develop a relationship with influences us, and in turn, we are influencing everyone that we have a relationship with.  You might think that’s incorrect, but I believe that it is true.  You are being influenced by people and you don’t even realize it, just like you don’t recognize the influence you are having on those around you.

I believe that God wants us to share our experiences with others who are going through something similar to roads we have already travelled.  It might be to let them know that they aren’t alone, or maybe it’s to let them see that someone they know has made that journey and survived it, or maybe it’s to give advice and criticism when it’s solicited.

The question is can you accept the criticism and advice, or is your wall of pride so high that you can’t see anything over it?  

When we are willing to accept correction and soak up suggestions, it is an opportunity for growth.The more we let Jesus fill us with Him, the less room there is for pride, and more room is made for grace and wisdom.

Taking advice is hard for some people, because it shows weakness. Perhaps because of the fall, we are simply loaded with pride, and many of us don’t like to show that kind of need. 

I was looking for synonyms for know-it-all a little earlier today, and I found that some adjectives associated with it are “arrogant, egotistical, vain, and braggart.”  Those are some nightly ugly words.  The picture that my mind puts together when I read them isn’t one of beauty, and it certainly isn’t a reflection of Jesus.  As Christ grows in us, our ability to recognize godliness and wisdom in those around us grows as well.  He opens us up to the fact that we need to accept help and advice from others with the same beliefs and moral compass.

Look around for people you know that could offer help and Godly advice when you need it, and don’t be too proud to ask.  There is freedom in admitting weakness.

Passages to Ponder:

Psalm 141:5- Let the godly strike me!  It will be a kindness!  If they correct me, it is soothing medicine.  Don’t let me refuse it.  But I pray constantly against the wicked and their deeds.

Proverbs 13:10- Pride leads to conflict; those who take advice are wise.

Proverbs 29:23- Pride ends in humiliation, while humility brings honor.

Contrbutors:  Karen Bromby, Michele Killion, Kim McClure and Shawna Nelson

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