This is how the Lord responds: “If you return to me, I will restore you so you can continue to serve me. If you speak good words rather than worthless ones, you will be my spokesman. You must influence them; do not let them influence you! Jeremiah 15:19 NLT
“Remember you’re an atmosphere changer.”
When my friend spoke those words to me, it reminded me of the verse above I read a while back in Jeremiah 15.
A verse I knew, the moment I read it, would need to be etched on my heart.
You see, while I have a desire to use what God has poured into me to influence others for His glory, I know how easy it is for the tables to turn and find that the environment I’m in is actually influencing me.
Influence: The capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behavior of someone or something, or the effect itself.
One word that holds more weight than you’ve probably thought about.
Influence is not necessarily a bad thing. We all have mentors, friends, and family members alike that have imparted great jewels into our lives.
But that’s not what I’m referring to.
I’m talking about the influence of the world that takes us further and further away from the things we know to be true.
Everything that looks good doesn’t always mean it’s good for you. Have you ever found yourself caught in the current of the world’s way of doing and saying things? In our quest to be relevant we start to compromise. What were once just cool things to say, becomes doctrine that we start to live by. We’re afraid to stand for real truth because the world says truth is “relative”. I’ll save that for another day. And instead of “letting our words change others, we change our words to suit them (Jeremiah 15:19 MSG)
I think if we desire to serve God and live out what it truly means to be an atmosphere changer, we can no longer be conformed to the world. Rather we must be transformed by the renewing of our minds. For it is then we will recognize and carry out God’s perfect will. (Romans 12:1-3)
I know it’s not always easy but I’m praying for those of us who are willing to take a stand. Those who won’t cherry pick things from God’s word that make us feel good -but with honest, open, vulnerable hearts are willing to turn back and say Lord.. I want to be a true spokesman (or woman) who declares your truth! Will we get it right every time.. definitely not. But remember even though the righteous fall seven times, they will rise again! Proverbs 24:16.
Keep Returning. Keep Rising. Keep Influencing The World For His Glory.
We do ourselves and each other a disservice when we allow the influence of the world to infiltrate what the Lord has called us to do. You are called to be an atmosphere changer. But how often do we allow the atmosphere to change us?
James 4:4 says “Don’t you know that flirting with the world’s values places you at odds with God? Whoever choose to be the world’s friend makes himself God’s enemy! “
How are you flirting with the world’s value? In what ways do you think this impacts the influence you have? I know we are real people living in a real world. So this doesn’t mean that you hide yourself in a bubble until Jesus returns. What I do think this reminds us of is that we have to be intentional about what has influenced us in our relation to God- specifically when we desire to be His mouthpiece.
This also means that we have to be humble enough to allow people to speak into our lives. It’s become common practice to say that someone is being judgmental when they call us to the carpet on our stuff. But perhaps God has placed these people in your life as safe guards to help you stay the course. Galatians 6:1 puts it this way “Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.”
I’m praying for you as you read this that you would be on fire to use your influence for good. It’s time for us to turn back ladies. Say it with me…I am an atmosphere changer!
So put on the full armor of the Lord. Renew your mind. Refocus on what’s essential. And go forth this week in the strength of the Lord. Let’s use our influence to point the world to only one worthy of praise…. King Jesus!