Last December my husband and I were out doing some final shopping for one of our many holiday events when he spotted someone he knew. This is not too unusual for my very social husband who really thinks that a stranger is someone he has only yet to meet. We struck a conversation with this guy and his wife who are about the same age as us and like us a second time around marriage. Inspired by the chance meeting he extended an invite to them to join us during one of those said holiday event, an invite which they accepted. Since that chance(not) meeting we have had the opportunity to fellowship with this couple on a few occasions and have become better acquainted. During our most recent evening together the conversation moved toward how God uses us in our life and I was struck by how perfectly we are each crafted to sometimes thrive at other times just survive in our sphere of influence. Let me elaborate.
S.G is employed in the local boat yard as a welder. The mostly men who inhabit the world in which he has been assigned can be shall we say tough, sometimes mean-spirited, crass kind of guys. I know from our conversation that S.G is often challenged by the hardness of the environment yet he is well equipped to handle these guys. S.G has a personal walk with God that enables him to speak boldly into their lives. And it would seem that there is a knowing respect for S.G’s relationship with his savior which at times actually curbs the language and behavior(at least in his presence). It is through him that the light of the Lord is shining in this dark place.
As I pondered this man and his sphere I was struck by how uniquely gifted we each are for exactly our personal sphere of influence. I could not imagine walking the walk that S.G is called to but that is not my walk. Many people have remarked to me over the years how difficult “my” calling is—working with cancer patients;yet I enjoy the rewards daily often finding myself even more greatly blessed than those I minister to.
I was recently reading in the book of John and I came across the story when Jesus reinstates Peter. In this passage Jesus asks Peter 3 times if he loves him. When Peter confirms this to be fact Jesus says to him then follow me. So Peter does. But Peter notices that they are being followed by one of the other disciples and asks Jesus, what about him? To which Jesus replies, what is that to you. You must follow me. Jesus to telling us that it doesn’t matter what the other guy is doing, all that matters is that we are obedient to His command and follow him.
Each one of us is uniquely fashioned by the Creator of the universe to influence an assigned sphere. We need to be less concerned about what the person next to us is doing and more concerned about if we are doing everything we are called to.
What is your assigned sphere of influence? Are you doing your part to spread His light?