I woke up this morning excited to spend some time in Gods word. I had no intentions on writing this morning. But as I opened my bible in the Book of Genesis and began to read, God showed me somethings this morning. After reading by myself for an hour, I told my son to go grab his bible so we could read and study together. After reading with my son in the book of Judges, God confirmed to me what he wanted me to write and say today. God wanted me to talk about influence and integrity. Sometimes we fail to realize how important our influence and integrity are on others. We assume that no one is really paying attention to anything we are doing. But actually more people are watching us than we believe. We have so many opportunities to leave something incredible behind that could out last us. Things that we can pass on to our families and friends and those we know. But the choice is totally up to us on what we decide to leave.
As I studied this morning in the Book of Genesis, I could clearly see the influence that Reuben the son of Jacob had in the beginning on those around him and his brothers. We can see here in Genesis chapter 30 verses 14-17 the good influence he had on his family. 14 During wheat harvest, Reuben went out into the fields and found some mandrake plants, which he brought to his mother Leah. Rachel said to Leah, “Please give me some of your son’s mandrakes.” 15 But she said to her, “Wasn’t it enough that you took away my husband? Will you take my son’s mandrakes too?” “Very well,” Rachel said, “he can sleep with you tonight in return for your son’s mandrakes.” 16 So when Jacob came in from the fields that evening, Leah went out to meet him. “You must sleep with me,” she said. “I have hired you with my son’s mandrakes.” So he slept with her that night. 17 God listened to Leah, and she became pregnant and bore Jacob a fifth son. Reuben’s work out in the field brought a blessing to his mother. Reuben later would lose his influence on those around him based off a bad decision he made. The bad decision that he made was sleeping with his fathers concubine Bilhah. After making that decision he would work hard trying to get it back, only for his younger brother Judah to become the brother that everyone listened to.
Genesis 35:22 While Israel was living in that region, Reuben went in and slept with his father’s concubine Bilhah, and Israel heard of it. That was a bad decision for him to make. So when his other brothers plotted to kill Joseph he tried to rescue them from their hands. His intentions were to have him thrown into the cistern and later take him back to his father. But instead when he came back to the cistern Joseph was nowhere to be found. He had lost some respect and influence he once had as the first-born to his brothers from his previous actions. Judah became the one that everyone came to look up to as a leader. Genesis 37:26 Judah said to his brothers, “What will we gain if we kill our brother and cover up his blood? 27 Come, let’s sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him; after all, he is our brother, our own flesh and blood.” His brothers agreed. So our actions can change the influence we have on others. Our actions can cause others to no longer listen to us or think we are creditable. We have seen so many people in politics and in the celebrity world lose their influence because something they have done. We have seen some steal, cheat and do all sorts of things that makes us look at them in a different way. This not only happens to them though, it happens in everyday life. In those you may never hear about.
I will finish this with what I saw and took out of the book of Judges that can affect each and every one of us. Joshua was a man who had great influence on those around him. His impact and influence was so great that the bible says that even after his death. The people served the Lord throughout his lifetime and after. But after his generation died off. There were no one to pass it own and the next generation suffered because of it. Judges 2:6 After Joshua had dismissed the Israelites, they went to take possession of the land, each to their own inheritance. 7 The people served the Lord throughout the lifetime of Joshua and of the elders who outlived him and who had seen all the great things the Lord had done for Israel. 8 Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of a hundred and ten. 9 And they buried him in the land of his inheritance, at Timnath Heresm in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash. 10 After that whole generation had been gathered to their ancestors, another generation grew up who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done for Israel. 11 Then the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord and served the Baals. 12 They forsook the Lord, the God of their ancestors, who had brought them out of Egypt. They followed and worshiped various gods of the peoples around them. They aroused the Lord’s anger 13 because they forsook him and served Baal and the Ashtoreths.
So my question for your today is what kind of influence do you have on others? How is your integrity and what is it worth to you? Is there anything in your life that you’re doing that no one knows, that would cause you to lose your influence you have on others? After you leave this Earth will you leave something positive behind?
Lord I pray that we search our hearts trying to live out your will in our lives. That we use the influence you have given us in a positive way for others, and that we hold on to our integrity never letting go of the wheel. I also pray lord that if someone has not accepted you as their Lord and Saviour. That they receive you now as the Lord and Saviour and believe that you died for their sins and have forgiven them of their past transgressions in Jesus name AMEN!!