Monday, December 17, 2007

Impact

There are some people that come into your life that you just know right off the bat are going to play an important role in your life. Then there are others who quietly, without you realizing it, impact your life in various ways.

God has blessed me with numerous people from all walks of life who have made an impact on my life. Tonight was our office Christmas party, and our current association president and his wife attended. We have a lot of wonderful and memorable members, but these two are some of the most genuinely kind and thoughtful people I've ever met. As I drove home tonight, I thought about how blessed I am to have gotten to know them and how much their kindness and thoughtful gestures have influenced me. They are a couple who are truly in love with God and in love with each other, and they model the kind of marriage that I would like to have someday.

There are many, many other people who have come into my life and played important roles. Of course my family has had the most influence on me, but I am thinking tonight of so many others who have also impacted me. I think about a woman I know who was a single woman in her 20s while I was in college. We weren't particularly close, but I do remember that one time she sent me a note of encouragement along with a book of stamps. For some reason, that sticks in my memory--perhaps because a broke college student appreciated getting anything in the mail! I often received care packages and letters from home, but getting something from a non-family member was really special.

I think of the men and women who welcomed me into the singles group when I began attending my current church home. I was fresh out of college, had just moved back to Montgomery, and pretty much all of my friends were either still in college or living and working in other cities. These people welcomed me in and became a new group of friends. There are two women in particular from that group, both of whom are married now, one with children, whom I am still close to. They are both several years older than me and have taught me so much through sharing their wisdom gleaned from many trials and experiences.

I think of one of my very best friends who I met through the singles group. We became friends pretty quickly, but our friendship was really cemented after we both went through devastating break-ups of relationships at the same time. We were able to comiserate, cry together, vent together, and lift each other up and encourage each other. I truly believe that we would not be as close today if we had not both gone through such a similar valley at the same time.

I could go on and on, which is a wonderful thing to realize. Some people God has brought into my life for just a short while, but the impact they've made is lifelong. Other people have been with me for years, and, Lord willing, will be in my life for the rest of my life.

As I reflect on how blessed I am to know and be touched by so many people, I think about the kind of impact that I have on others' lives. I often forget that, whether I realize it or not, I am influencing others in some way. I want to live in a way that my influence is for good, and where the memories I leave behind are gracious ones.

2 comments:

Confessing Lunatic said...

I want you to know what an impact you have had on my life. I enjoy reading your blog because you often have insight to issues that I face. I especially like your post on spiritual forecast. I've thought about it over several days and have wanted to say thank you! Too often as I leave the house clothed and ready for work, I forget to clothe myself with God's armor. When I look back, those are the days when life seems so difficult. Thank you for your impact on my life. God truly has blessed us all because of you!

DJG said...

great thoughts. to have a truly "full life" our focus should be on the impact we have on others...