There is a prayer I have for all of my kids, and I think it’s one most parents who are followers of Jesus have for their kids as well.
God, empower them be the influence.
It’s simple. But it could change the world.
And honestly, being influential in the life of my kid’s beyond just being the parent is something I am still learning. Speaking life isn’t always the tendency I have, but it needs to be. Jesus gave the instruction,
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.Matthew 28:19-20
In essence, get out there and influence others for Me. Live a life that points others to Me. Tell them about Me with your words AND actions. When I see my daughter interacting with her friends and peers, I pray that she would be the influence in the group that points towards Jesus.
She doesn’t always get it right. But then, perfection isn’t the expectation.
Really, thats the same position God takes with us. He knows perfection isn’t a reality for us in this life. But are we striving to be the influence in our circles? When guidance is sought, direction is needed; are you the one who steps up and points those around you in the right direction?
I love how Jesus begins this directive. In the verse before He says,
All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.Matthew 28:18
His basis for giving this directive is rooted in His ultimate and explicit authority over everything. And He doesn’t kind of suggest we do this, He commands it. This is what gut punches me, as a follower of Him, being a person of influence for the Kingdom isn’t an option. It’s not a task get to decide when and where I want to engage in.
It’s implied that this is an ongoing, constant expectation as a follower of Jesus. I mean, look at how He ends this command:
And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”Matthew 28:20
I’m pretty confident that my time on earth will end before the “end of the age” comes to pass. That leads me to conclude the expectation is to live a life of influence for Jesus. To strive every day to make an impact for His Kingdom through the interactions I have. To speak life.
That’s what I want to see in the lives of my kids.
But it has to start with me.
We don’t always see our children and grandchildren as part of our mission field, but who else is in a position for us to influence so profoundly? Thanks for the reminder.
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