Lasting Influences

December 10, 2010

So, the George Harrison Album Cloud Nine has been remastered and re-released almost ten years after his death.  That’s a lasting impression.  Gretsch guitars is releasing a George Harrison model soon.  Gretsch makes fabulous guitars (The White Falcon Double Cut would be a nice stocking stuffer.)  George’s influence is still being felt, decades after the band broke up, and still a decade after his death.

Of course that’s nothing compared to the Christmas music we’re listening to these days.  I love TSO and Mannheim Steamroller.  But most of my other favorite Christmas music comes from Gene Autry,  Bing Crosby, and Alvin and the Chipmunks.  Now That’s a lasting influence. People are still playing the old Christmas music from forty, fifty, and sixty years ago, and still loving it.

But if you really want to think about lasting impressions, lasting influences, lasting impact, it is the fact that we are still singing songs celebrating an event that happened two thousand years ago. We tritely talk about the reason for the season as we say “happy holiday’s” to the  UPS guy.  But our calendar is based on the Christ Event, which had been prophesied as much as 700 years previously.  And those prophesies were given to a nation which was founded centuries earlier  when Abraham was called to his new home.  Oh, yea, and all this Christmas stuff we are talking about (including my stocking stuffer) was the culmination of something promised in the third chapter of The Book of Genesis!

The lasting impression, the lasting influence is that which was formed when God chose to be our Creator, our Savior, our Friend.   And what excites me about the whole thing is that God has chosen to make us part of his lasting impression.  Now don’t get me wrong, the real goal here is to bring glory to God.  In fact the chief aim of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.  But in the midst of that we can be part of something lasting, something permanent.  We can choose to be influencers.  My spell checker doesn’t like that word – we can be people of influence we can leave people with a lasting impression as to the greatness and goodness of God; something people will not forget.

It is a choice we all have.  Make a difference for our own benefit, or even for a good cause, and the impression will be shallow and soon forgotten, like a good, but old song.  Or make a difference for the kingdom, and it will last forever.

Someone once said, “Do you want to see how long people will remember you?  Stick your hand in the water, pull it out, and see what kind of impression you will leave.”   I have a better idea.  Grab the biggest rock you can lift and throw it in the water.  Don’t worry about making an impression, make a splash, make waves!  Do something with kingdom significance.  Do something worth remembering.

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