Most people live for one priority – self. Put simply, this is a losing proposition. When Christians live for self, we lose our ability to make a difference. Jude verse 22 states, "And of some have compassion, making a difference…” Clearly, our priorities should revolve around eternity and the eternal souls of men! The only things that will last forever are the souls of men and the service we have rendered unto Christ. To truly make a difference, we must align our lives with the priorities that Jesus established.
When you determine to make a difference, you will experience opposition. Difference-makers are attacked, criticized, and maligned. The only way to avoid criticism is to do nothing, and say nothing. Regardless of opposition, don't ever stop dreaming about making a difference.
While walking along a beach, an elderly gentleman saw someone in the distance. The person was repeatedly leaning down, picking up objects, and throwing them into the ocean. As the man came closer, he realized it was a young man, picking up starfish one by one and tossing each one gently back into the water.
As he came still closer he called out, "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?" The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean." The old man smiled, and said, "I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die." Upon hearing this, the elderly observer commented, "But, young man, don't you realize that there are miles of beach and thousands of starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!" The young man listened politely. Without saying a word, he bent down, picked up another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As he stood back up he said, "It made a difference for that one."
Here is a statement I have read to many a Christian school staff over the years:
"The little girl lingered in the classroom after all the others had left. Reluctantly, with painful heart, she told that her mom was home with a new boyfriend; and she wasn't wanted around. Her dad had a new girlfriend. Her brother was on drugs, and her sister constantly picked on her. She told the teacher, "I just wish someone would hug me!"
Has the Christian community lost its sensitivity to the hurting all around us? More and more in this busy, hurry, hurry world of ours, we seem to say to those hurting, those afraid, those lonely, "be healed," and then we go our merry way. Dear heart, a warm handshake, a hand laid gently on the shoulder, a quick little hug can give more encouragement than many hours of counseling.
You are only going to make a difference for the glory of God through one life at a time. One eight year old child, one young couple, one elderly saint, one hospital visit at a time. If we will apply this principle now, in time we will look back and see that the Lord greatly used us to make a difference. Someone before you made a difference in your life. Now it is time for you to make a difference in someone’s life coming after you. May your prayer be, "Here am I, Lord, send me. Use me to make a difference!"
May God's blessing be upon you this week as you read and meditate on the Weekly SERMON from the Book of Revelation Chapter 3 on "The Lukewarm Church at Laodicea."
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