Killers of Your positive Influence
The death of our positive influence can be sudden and unintentional. However we sometimes lose sight of the sphere of influence God has given us and we begin to take people for granted. We can kill their spirit and our influence on their lives in one fell swoop. It takes the whole phrase of killing two birds with one stone to a whole new level.
Generally that term is a positive one that alludes to multitasking, and often times viewed in a positive light. However tonight we are gonna chat about those things that we do that can instantly kill any positive influence we may have had.
(DISCLAIMER: I know that there are sooooooo many more that fit into this category and I assure you we will have a chance to discuss this in the comments below-Just hang in there)
Choice#1- Don’t be a SNAP-dragon
Have you ever been in a conversation with someone and then all f a sudden BAM- you don’t know what you have done but apparently some line has been crossed and you have found yourself in line of a SNAP- dragon. You have no idea what you have said or done but just like that the person bit your head off. OR WORSE You are the SNAP-dragon. We have all been on both sides of this situation.
One of the major repercussions of this choice is that over time people just stop wanting to be around us.. This really affects our testimony. I’m not saying that things always have to be good or happy or anything like that. I want nothing more than people to be real with me, but it is not ok to be abusive in how we talk to each other!
Choice #2 Don’t be a Johnny -Jump -to -Conclusions
RecentlyI was in a situation where someone jumped to conclusions about my motives in something. They thought they new my heart. Then I have to chuckle because eI have done the same thing. Usually it ends with and open-mouth-insert-foot sort of moment.
As I have thought about this, I have really come to realize that this is bordering on a god complex. Thinking that we know all. We don’t talk to people or ask questions and instead we assume we have it all figured out. We can do this with every area of life. AND if we aren’t careful it can become a habit in which we can literally begin to think that we and God agree and God has shone us……..You fill in the blank.
Sadly God often has to out us in our place and in the process we have done some hefty damage along the way. When we choose to be a Johnny-Jump-to-onclusions we can
- alienate those around us by making them feel stupid or inadequate
- we unintentionally become judgmental
- kill relationships by thinking we know it all and have all the answers
#3 The Choice to Run Away
I wish I could runaway from my problems but every time I try I am still there. Isn’t that the truth. I have no idea who said it. I have heard this said so many ways and yet the same sentiment is communicated. We are really the root of our own problems.
I see it all the time. No matter who I am with. Especially me. We think that so and so is the problem so we ditch that friend and move onto the next and low and behold we have THE SAME problem and so we ditch that friend and we live in this crazy cycle. We don’t deal with the problems we just run from them. We build walls to protect ourselves. The problem is we are still stuck with ourselves. And when we do that do you know what tends happen. Bitterness and anger creep in. and we become more and more upset with how we have been hurt so we keep running with those walls built and carrying all that baggage.
God doesn’t want us to do that because when we build walls to protect ourselves from the very people he has brought into our lives, we not only put up walls between ourselves and “THOSE” people but we also out up walls between us and God. Our relationship with Him will suffer greatly Just look at Jonah. He got so mad that the Ninevites repented that he went and sat and waited for God to wipe them all out. He became bitter and angry with God because it didn’t work out the way He wanted it to because those people were literally some of the worst people on the planet. How could God possibly save them? Contrast that to the Isrealites accepting Rehab a foreign prostitute into the “family”. And because of her faithfulness she ends up in the line of David and eventually Jesus! Attitude is everything!
Choice #4- Complaining is not your right to make us miserable
Have you ever read Mrs. Piggle Wiggle by Betty McDonald? Until last year I had never heard of the books or the author! Well we punched 4 books in the series and I am currently read the third book (though I am pretty sure that I have them out of order oooops!)
Mrs. Piggle Wiggle loves children and she is able to cure them of the most horrible ailments. Our current chapter in Hello Mrs. Piggle Wiggle is “THE CRABBY CURE”. The little girl in this chapter whines and complains about EVERY. SINGLE. THING. Whether is is perceived or reality. That child is horrible to live with. In the first few pages of the chapter she has complained about 6 or 7 different things. Her brothers and sister can barely stand her and her mother clearly has no idea how to fix it, The girl even gets called names and picked on at school and according to her big brother “no one likes her”. In our home we call this being a negative Nancy. And complaining is right up there at the top for being an influence killer.
Two things happen when a known complainer walks into the room. First they attract ALL of the other complainers, even if they are normally quiet. Complainers have the innate ability to draw out the complainer in the most mild of people And secondly those who aren’t complainers- those Pollyannas in the room with leave. Te room, the party, the house, even the state if possible. The complaining sucks them dry of joy. And when that happens, then they too become complainers.
I have seen this in my own life. It really boils down to a dissatisfaction of life. They either fail to or refuse to see all the things they have to be grateful for. All they can see is the negative around them. Little do they realize the power they hold to change the negative into positive just by changing their attitude.
Choice #5- The choice NOT to forgive.
This is perhaps the biggest and most detrimental choice of all to our influence and really is connected to choice #4, #3, and #1.
Now let me just say this, you can forgive and still not give the same trust level as before and that is really how it should be.
But you cannot give what you do not have and this is where the gospel comes in. You cannot truly forgive a person without receiving true forgiveness yourself. I have watched people time and time and time again try so hard to forgive someone and they come back and say “I just can’t do it”. Forgiveness in a deep heart issue but it begins in the mind. There are people that I have to make an active choice multiple times a day to forgive. I am thankful, oh so thankful that God’s forgiveness is perfect and that I don’t have to worry every day about needing new forgiveness.
But there are times in our lives here we consciously or unconsciously say- I’m not going to forgive that person, what they did was :unforgivable”. Boy am I glad that Jesus didn’t say that about us!
I want to be able to point people to Jesus and that means in the way I forgive people. Does that mean I won’t guard my heart when it has been hurt. No, I will guard it, but I’m not going to tell God no that person isn’t worth my forgiveness. That’s a very negative influence.
These five choices are just that….CHOICES. They are choices that when really gotten down to the bare bones of the matter are about our attitudes. We all have choices to make. It might not be about our circumstances but it is certainly about how we look at those circumstances and chose to take positive attitudes or negative ones.
What are some negative attitudes you have seen that have been a negative influence….This is not meant to be a complaining session!
Interested in reading the rest of the Power of Your influence series ?Check it out HERE!