If You’re Building Your Influence With a Focus On Magnitude, It’s Time to Reevaluate

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“Whoever gives heed to instruction prospers, and blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord.”

proverbs 16:20

Have this month’s blogs led you on a journey of learning to listen? Many of us would consider ourselves to be good listeners, but there’s a difference between being a good conversation sparring partner and being able to still your mind and heart enough to hear the voice of God calling to you.

At the beginning of this discussion focused on determining your current influencer status, you were asked to exercise patience when asking God for guidance. Not all revelations and communication with God will be on an Abraham scale! Sometimes, when asking God to help you become the greatest influence your community has ever been enriched by, He will instead ask you to roll up your sleeves and start right where you are.

What does that look like? How are you supposed to grow your power to influence if God is wanting you to just stay where you are? Influence doesn’t have any prerequisites. There isn’t a certain spiritual or professional level that you must reach before you can start impacting lives. For many of us, our work and time with colleagues is a huge part of our lives, with the majority of our time each day spent furthering our careers and earning a living. Wouldn’t it make sense, then, that this is where God likely wants you to start your pursuit of influence?

Influence at work doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact, in her blog this month, Emma Sharma shared this revelation about being an influence as a leader: “God asks me to LOVE people wherever I am and whatever I am doing, including – or maybe especially (where love is so often lacking) – at work.” Yes, February is the “month of love” but Emma didn’t pick that word for the sake of the holiday. Loving someone is one of the best ways to positively influence, especially at work. You could have so much impact on someone just by giving them five minutes of your morning to truly listen to how their weekend went.

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.”

philippians 2:3

In order to plan out your future influence will look like, you have to be ready to listen for God’s say in the matter, and you need to make sure you are listening well. You may get an immediate and resounding direction, or you may be told something completely against the direction you had planned to go. It’s normal to feel disappointed or confused when God’s plan contradicts what you’ve set on your heart, but as Diana Romero said in her blog this month, you must “ask Him to align your desires with His and trust that He is guiding your way.”

Being an influence isn’t about you. If you’re planning out an “influence strategy” rooted in personal gain or recognition, you’ve missed the point entirely. As a Christian, you’ve been placed on this planet, at this point in time, to have an impact that furthers God’s kingdom. While that sounds grand, your impact is unique to you and what God has gifted you with. Maybe you’ll move Everest-size mountains and influence millions…or maybe you’ll have a handful of people who will look back and credit your kind words and actions with encouraging them to summit their Everests.

As you head off down the path to discover your influence, don’t focus on the magnitude of your impact; focus on the meaning.