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Knowing Ourselves - April 2018

God wants us to influence people toward right living; toward loving and serving Him

Knowing Ourselves
Know Your Influence – Part 1

Scripture Reading: 2 Corinthians 2: 12-16

Key Verse: 2 Corinthians 2:15

Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by those who are perishing.

As we go into these last six days of April, I would like to look at the last slice of “Knowing Ourselves.” Unfortunately, this last element of ourselves is seldom considered, but so important. It is all about our influence. Look at the definition of influence: “the capacity or power of a person to be a compelling force on or produce effects on the actions, behaviors, opinions of others” (Dictionary.com). John Maxwell likes to define leadership as influence, the power to compel someone to go in a certain direction. It is true that some people have a lot of influence and some do not. It is also true that some people’s influence is bad and some have good influence on others. But the fact remains, we all have influence in one way or another.

God wants us to influence people toward right living; toward loving and serving Him, which leads to right living. If we walk with Him faithfully, as best we know how, we will be a great influence on others. Jesus speaks of this in the Gospel of John: “Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me” (John 15:4). The fruit that Jesus is speaking of is all about our positive influence on other people.

Today’s key verse reminds us that we can be an “aroma of Christ.” That language paints a good picture of influence. The smell of people will either attract us to them or repel us from them. What do people smell when they are around you? Does it make them think of Jesus or the common things of this world? Does it make them think about the way they are living or do little in making them notice anything? We are not to live our lives in such a way that we so blend in to the culture that our lives cause little influence to the people around us. (Continued)

Father, today I will be your “aroma.” In Jesus’ Name, amen.