Summary: The power of one individual to significantly impact the many. The key:burying one’s self in favor of others for Christ’s sake.
The Power of One
The truth is, a kernel of wheat must be planted in the soil. Unless it dies it will be alone--a single seed. But its death will produce many new kernels--a plentiful harvest of new lives.25Those who love their life in this world will lose it. Those who despise their life in this world will keep it for eternal life.26All those who want to be my disciples must come and follow me, because my servants must be where I am. And if they follow me, the Father will honor them.27
John 12:24-27, NLT
IN A RECENT ISSUE OF A PERIODICAL THAT I SUBSCRIBE TO, a theme appeared that embraced the words of the text in John 12:24, namely ¡°The Power of One.¡± The editor brought together several testimonials from individuals whose lives had been significantly impacted by others. Included were the power of one teacher, the power of one student, the power of one friend, the power of one pastor, and the power of one personality.
Isn¡¯t it amazing how one individual can make such a powerful and lasting impression on us that it shapes who we are? Think about it. I immediately began to search my mind in an effort to find those individuals who affected me the most. What one single person has had the most impact on your life?
And then again, have you scrutinized your own life and made it your aim to powerfully influence others for the glory of God?
You can do it! You may never be on the front cover of Time or appear on national TV or even the local media. But you can make a difference. A powerful difference.
¡ö be in heaven because of you
¡ö have kept going when they were tempted to give up because of you
¡ö be in church because of your life
¡ö be in the ministry because you lived and prayed in a manner that inspired them
Don¡¯t ever sell yourself short. You can have an impact that will last throughout eternity!
Jesus, by using the analogy between a grain of wheat and each of us, revealed the potential of a life devoted to God. He answered the question, ¡°What difference can one person make?¡± His teaching can inspire and guide us in the life of discipleship today.
Jesus declared the ¡°Value of One.¡± He put the emphasis on a single grain of wheat. Within each seed there is the miraculous capability to reproduce. Each seed is created to bring forth a new manifestation of life.
Illus.: Seeds found by archeologist¨C4,000 years old, still dormant, but with potential
The glory of Christianity is its claim that small things really matter and that the small company, the very few, the one man, the one woman, the one child are of infinite worth to God.
But wait a minute! Let¡¯s back up. Look at John 12:24 again: ¡°Unless it dies it will be alone--a single seed. But its death will produce many new kernels--a plentiful harvest of new lives.¡±
In the natural world, we know that when a seed ¡°dies,¡± it actually germinates. It is not destroyed; it is released to achieve the miracle of its mission. This is what Jesus means when he calls us to ¡°die¡± for him. He has no desire to negate our lives, or to destroy them, but rather he has every intention to use us beyond self-containment.
Our lives ¡°germinate¡± when we give them to Him. If the truth be known, that one person who so powerfully influenced us, was willing to ¡°die¡± to his own interests and ambitions in favor of God¡¯s. Example: Rev. Wm Deighton
Have you ever looked at our world with all of its needs and asked yourself, ¡°What difference can I make?¡± Well, you might not be able to change the whole world, but you can make a difference in your sphere of influence.
Dr. John Geddie, a Presbyterian missionary, went to Aneityum, an island in the South Pacific in 1848 and worked there for God for 24 years. On the tablet erected to his memory these words are inscribed: When he landed, in 1848, there were no Christians. When he left, in 1872, there were no heathen.
J.O. Sanders, Spiritual Leadership, p. 24.
My life shall touch a dozen lives before this day is done;
Leave countless marks for good or ill, ere sets the evening sun.
This is the wish I always wish, the prayer I always pray:
Lord, may my life help other lives it touches by the way.
Mahatma Gandhi made a fundamental decision to expel the British power out of India. This choice founded in authentic power, was more powerful than the force of all the guns and bombs of an entire Empire. A short frail man with glasses, moved out an entire empire without a single bullet.