Influence…this was a word that the Lord spoke to my heart recently and I have been pondering it.
It’s very important that I recognise what it is that is influencing me. Ideas or emotions that are shaping my thinking or actions. The Lord wants me to be aware of what is influencing me.
Subtle influences conforming and trying to mould me to this world’s culture which may be more influential than I realise.
Influence….whether we admit it or not we are all influenced by something or someone. That someone can also be us….our “old” selves rather than our “new” man in Christ.
So something to consider…..our actions, thoughts, desires, decisions, plans….what is influencing them.
The decisions we make or see others make (which may or may not affect us) they are all influenced.
Some sources of influence are open and transparent but other influences are subtle, manipulative, controlling and coercive. We don’t want to get caught in a trap of those influences.
There are influences which we can discern are clearly for good and then others which would lead us into ungodly things.
It’s interesting to me that there is this social phenomenon of “Influencers”…people given this label who are “Influencers” because of the power of their social media presence and amount of followers. Advertisers flock to their sites.
As I have thought about sources of influence in my life, I have made a note of the following, you may think of others and I’d be interested to hear:
My bible/Jesus and His teachings,The Holy Spirit’s leading
Me/My emotions (good or bad), my experiences, my character
My husband/My parents/family
My Pastor/His preaching
My fellowship group at church
Bloggers that I follow/connect with
Alcohol (any amount will “influence” our behaviour)
I’ve written all these down as I thought about them but it may not necessarily be the case (all the time) that those at the top of the list influence me the most or those at the bottom the least.
What weight do I give to these influences in my life. How long do I spend with each one. Which are more reliable.
Test, weigh, prove. In court as a juror you have to weigh the evidence given. An eye witness account from a plausible witness corroborated by one or two others will far outweigh hearsay or second hand testimony. The evidence is tested and weighed through questioning and cross examining. The trustworthiness of the witness tested.
Are we influenced by things taken at face value without testing the source?
Through the media, it seems people can be whipped up into a frenzy of emotion and opinion very quickly and sometimes over seemingly nothing or things subsequently proven to be false or fake news.
Psalm 24 encourages us to swing wide and open the gate and let the King of Glory, Jesus, come in.
The Gates of the City were historically important places of influence and decision making. The elders gathered at the gates of the city to discuss and make decisions.
The Gates were opened to allow access or shut to refuse entry and for protection and safety of the citizens within.
The Gates were large, strong and often barred and guarded.
We all have gateways of influence in our lives and minds.
Every day we make decisions to permit or refuse things to operate in our lives and indwell our thoughts whether for good or bad.
Let us guard the gates of influence in our lives.
I want the gates of influence in my life to be opened wide for Jesus Christ’s influence. Not just a little bit open for Jesus but flung wide open.
Come Lord Jesus come.