Who do you want to be like when you grow up? Most people have people they admire. What is it that attracts us to these people and makes us want to be like them? Think about it; just as you observe others, others also observe you. Are they seeing in you the things that will want them to grow in the Lord and become stronger in their faith? Early in the history of Israel, God gave His people the Shema to remind them of their relationship with Him throughout their day. They not only spoke it, they lived it and they not only lived it, they lived it with others.
Listen, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord alone. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. (Deuteronomy 6:4-6 NLT)
Lifestyle influence is one of the strongest forms of leadership. It’s where your walk matches your talk. This congruency is powerful. It creates a lifestyle testimony that truly proclaims your values and beliefs. If your “talk and walk” don’t match, the disconnect raises suspicion and undermines trust. Without trust, you have no influence.
People trust others who do what they say and conduct themselves in a manner consistent with who they claim to be. Their lifestyle becomes their greatest platform for teaching and growing others through the profound influence of their example. They aren’t even aware that people are watching because they are “souly” focused on living consistently with who they want to be.
As a Christian leader, let me encourage you to live and lead today with the reality that “The Lord our God is One God”. Live and lead today in the context of “loving God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength”. How might your day be different if you lived it with this truth in mind? More than that how would your leadership and ultimately your influence be different?
Live your life today by imagining someone looking at you and saying: “When I grow up, I want to be just like (your name)”. It could be a sibling, a child, an employee, a neighbor…people are watching. What is your “Lifestyle Influence” going to be like today?