Thursday, 9 January 2014


I have been thinking about influence a bit lately.  I see how as a youth pastor I have a certain amount of influence over the perceptions of life my youth group teens come to have. Not just in matters of faith but in the subtle things they pick up from my actions, from the way to talk and language to use, to how to interact with others and even things like driving and eating habits.

In some cases I think my influence probably hasn't been the best possible example, and I have been checking myself in these last few weeks about improving the influence I have by making sure my life, my standpoint and my comments are the best example young people can see in their life around them. Sure I'm going to stuff up, but I want to diligently be the best example I can be.

The greater the influence, the more careful we have to be I think. If you have a worldwide influence then any little comment you make can have a huge effect on different lives.  I witnessed recently someone of great influence make some remarks which have caused ripples of uncertainty to sweep through the Church - it wasn't a core theological issue, but something small, and something not set in stone. But by one person making that comment it has impacted relationships and points of view in practical ways that I am sure the person never intended.

I think it's a reminder to look at the influence we each have and ensure that we are doing the best with it and being careful not to cause issues through bad (even if accidental) influence.

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