Who Is The Most Influential?

Every year, TIME magazine comes out with a list of what they call "The 100 Most Influential People of the Year". The list always reflects the American perspective, but includes people from all over the world and all ages. People are chosen for influence, not always positive influence — just impact. The list is usually interesting and tells a lot about the media's view of what is important and noteworthy. After a casual evaluation of this year's list, I find myself more disappointed than usual at this snapshot of our world.

How do you determine the 100 most influential people in the world? Well, first of all, you decide whom to ask for their recommendations. Who is influential enough to choose who are the most influential people? This could lead to an absurdity, or a whole series of absurdities — like putting N Korea's Kim Jong Un and Miley Cyrus on the list along with the first openly gay pro athlete.

Who would you put on such a list if you were asked to recommend names? Give it some thought. Who do you see being the most influential among the people you know or among those that you pay attention to? Write down a list or imagine one. Who influences you the most?

I have been thinking and praying and studying and discussing the Holy Spirit a lot lately. A big question in my heart and spirit and mind every day is, how much influence is the Holy Spirit having on my life? In John 14, we see that on the night before Jesus allowed Himself to be hung on a cross as a sacrifice for all mankind, He told His closest friends that it was better for them that He leave them so that He could send the Comforter or Counselor. He went on to call Him the Spirit of Truth and said that the Spirit would teach us and would actually be in us. So the Holy Spirit of God is in me and counseling me and teaching me and guiding me. That would be the highest level of "influence". So, the question for me and for you is this: How much influence is the Holy Spirit having in our day-to-day life?

Do people know from watching you and listening to you and interacting with you that you are a Jesus person? Do people see the love and compassion and priorities of Jesus in your character and attitudes and passions? I have to admit that in many circumstances, it is not nearly as evident as it should be in my own life. One action I am taking is to be more conscious every day to ask the Holy Spirit to guide me and teach me and use me.

Who are the most influential people in your world? I urge you to begin each day by asking the Holy Spirit of God to guide you and heal you and restore you and influence you in every way to be a faithful disciple of Jesus. If the billions of us who claim to love Jesus, allowed His Spirit to be the primary influence in our lives — the world would be transformed in an instant.

It starts here!