Under the Influence

Under the Influence

Have you ever been frustrated by other drivers on the road? What a question! Who hasn’t been frustrated by other drivers? God recently convicted me of overexerting my highway prowess and it caused me to think about the areas in my life where I have influence.

I was on the way to work, probably running a few minutes late, when I got behind a slow car in my neighborhood. I followed this person closely so as not to miss the opportunity of scooting through a yellow light or then some. As we approached a turn on a quiet street, I quickly scooted around in an effort to maintain my pace when the car in front of me laid on their horn.

Is it just me or is there an unspoken horn etiquette? A quick honk is a wake-up call. A couple short honks is a hello to someone you know. But an extended honk shows frustration or anger. This car was definitely sharing the latter.

I was immediately sorry. It is never my intention to irritate someone, certainly not first thing in the morning. Then the Lord reminded me that I influence others in one way or another regardless of my intentionality.

My job. My marriage. My daughter. My friendships. My church and the discipleship group I lead. The list goes on and even includes the cashier at the grocery store and the instructor at my gym. I have to ask myself is it obvious my life looks different than the lives of those around me?

Is it obvious my life looks different than the lives of those around me?

As a follower of Jesus, my life should reflect His life. 1 John 2:6 says, “The one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.”

In all the areas of my life, I am to walk as Jesus walked. It seems like a lofty goal, but thankfully God guides us! Here are a few suggestions for seeking God’s guidance:

  • Spend time in prayer
    • It’s hard to imitate someone you don’t know. Spend time talking with God and get to know His heart.
    • “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” – 1 John 5:14
  • Reflect on Scripture
    • Don’t just read God’s Word, meditate on it. Let the Holy Spirit teach you in your times of reading. Some of my favorite reading plans are Foundations 260 and She Reads Truth/He Reads Truth.
    • “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.” – 2 Corinthians 3:18
  • Find a mentor
    • Find someone who you know is following Jesus and ask them for their mentorship in your life. One of my greatest joys has been having Jesus-like women in my life who have shown me what it means to follow Him. Ask God to reveal who that person should be for you!
    • “And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another…” – Hebrews 10:24-25

I had a Christian fish on the back of my first car and I didn’t think much about cutting someone off or making that light just as it turned red. But as I’ve grown in my relationship with the Lord, He’s taught me that my influence extends to ALL areas of my life, including when I’m behind the wheel.

Who’s under your influence? What opportunities has God given you to influence others for His glory today?

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Chelsea Arrington

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