As I grow older I am more aware of how small our circles of influence really are. At best we might touch the lives of a handful of people through our lifetime and then, as sad as it sounds, we will be remembered by only two generations…our children and grandchildren. Then, like the rest of humanity, we fade into the background…forgotten but for our name on the grave stone somewhere.
It is sad and it sure sounds negative but it’s true. The question is how do we best impact and influence these few lives for these few years we are here? I believe that the key to all of this is what Jesus told us to do in all of our relationships – that is to love one another. To truly love someone you must listen, care, think about them, connect with them, reach out to them, cry with them, forgive them, offer grace to them in other words really love them. That is the one life changing decision we each make that changes the lives of those few other lives we influence. A genuine love of others is the secret to influence that will last beyond your memory….it’s the one decision that has impact into eternity.
It is sad to me to think that for a good portion of my life, I lived my life in a judgmental fashion. Never really loving people the way I should have. My influence on my own children is something that I wish I could get a second chance to fix. For I am keenly aware of the failure in my life and know that I am responsible for that “influence” and will answer for it one day when I stand before my God.
With the birth of my grandson, my prayer is that my influence will be a positive one that will live on in him and then on to his children.
It is not too late to start to love the right way and it’s not to late to change.