Proverbs 25:11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver
“The bottom line is that you cannot have a relationship without being a person of influence. You give and receive counsel every day. It is not a task confined to paid professionals; it is woven into the fabric of human relationships. The problem is that we don’t often recognize the powerful impact of those everyday encounters…If you are alive on this planet, you are a counselor! You are interpreting life, and sharing those interpretations with others. You are a person of influence, and you are being influenced. There are people in your life who have your ear. Perhaps without even knowing it, they will shape your thinking, direct your desires, and influence your plan of action. The issue is not who is counseling. All of us are. The core issue is whether that counseling is rooted in the revelation of the Creator.” Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands
I speak thousands of words everyday. With every word I am communicating my beliefs. I am interpreting the world around me and therefore am influencing others with each conversation. How I talk to Rebecca about my day, how I direct my daughter’s life, how I interact with my co-workers are all examples of interactions I have every day. Each one of these interactions is like a brick that when added to thousands of other bricks builds a beautiful building. Each interaction by itself is of little value, but the cumulative effect of thousands of daily interactions has the potential to build something of great value.
If you were to ask me how much I prepare for a message, I would tell you I spend hours. If you were to ask me about how much time I spend preparing for a counseling session, I would tell you a half an hour on average. But for my day-to-day discussions and interactions, I spend little time at all. And yet, if I were to really think about it, I do far more to influence those around me by my day-to-day counsel and interaction than I will ever do from the pulpit or in my office.
I may be your pastor, and I may spend a matter of hours with you over the course of a year. But I spend days, weeks, and months with my family, friends, and co-workers. It is in those daily interactions that I exert the most influence on others and yet those are the interactions I spend the least amount of time examining.
I want to grow in this area. I want to seize my daily opportunities to influence others for the good. If it is true that I am influencing others with every interaction then the question that follows is, what is the impact of this influence? Would those who interact with me day-by-day say that their interaction with me is informed and shaped by God’s Word? What would my wife say, my daughter (if she could speak J), my friends, my co-workers, the bank teller, and my neighbor? If they are not regularly nudged by my interactions to trust God, rely upon him, and live in the good of his gospel, then I want to grow in this area. I want the cumulative weight of my interactions to push others to love God more and to serve him with all of their heart.
How would those closest to you answer these questions? Do you realize the cumulative effect of your interactions with family, friends, neighbors, and co-workers? Are you seizing the small interactions realizing the power of many small interactions over time?