Audience of One
I don't know anyone who doesn't want to be significant. We see it in babies, even, as they seek to catch and hold our attention. Whether we are famous or unknown, one of the most agonizing experiences for all of us is to feel invisible. How do we live the power of One Life?
I've been thinking a lot about how some people have the power to make a life changing difference and why it happens. Is it because they work harder than others? Or, is it because they have greater influence? Is it because they have more resource or finances? Or, could it be the power of their one life is lived for the Audience of One?
A life lived for the Audience of One is a life with a healthy identity foundation. They know who they are because they know who they are related to. They understand that their connection to their Creator, the Heavenly Father, who calls us his beloved children, gives them a platform from which to live that is eternally important.
A life lived for the Audience of One recognizes an ordinary shopping trip can become extraordinarily important as they follow the direction of their Heavenly Father. One woman I know was shopping for linens in a different part of town and was approached by a young man named Thomas who asked for money for food. She realized he was also looking for value, a touch, a prayer and a word of encouragement. She left the mall feeling very touched with the extraordinary encounter she experienced.
A life lived for the Audience of One recognizes the value of the ripple effect. One who parents children focused on faith and character development know the long term goal can produce an entire generational heritage of heirs who live into their full potential as human beings. One friend, Laurie, is pouring her life into a thesis focused on helping parents become the primary disciplers of their children. She understands as she equips parents, she can change whole communities.
A life lived for the Audience of One recognizes that being focused on pleasing their Heavenly Father helps make the competing voices become much quieter. As we listen and watch for what he is saying and doing, and follow his direction, the power of others over us dramatically loosens. I used to be very tied to what others said and thought about me; how I pleased them or how I disappointed them. Today, because of my commitment to live for the Audience of One, I live in greater contentment and fulfillment. I don't hesitate to take risks if I believe my Father is calling me to his great adventure.
A life lived for the Audience of One changes the people around us. My Sudanese brother, Arok Garang, courageously began to look for partners to help him support Sudanese children in school. He envisions a new country of South Sudan filled with godly and equipped leaders, and knows that his efforts can help make that happen...as he follows the father's direction. Today, 40 children are sponsored through Seeds of Hope (www.missionlux.org/seedsofhope) as many are joining Arok in supporting future leaders of South Sudan.
Last summer Arok was the missionary for Arvada Covenant Church' VBS. The children sat enamored as they listened to Arok' s story of leaving his burning village as a little boy and walking 1,000 miles across Africa to a refugee camp, as thousands of other lost boys joined him. They listened intently as they heard Arok tell of hearing his Heavenly Father's voice speak to him on the journey, "I will use you to rebuild your village one day."
The children were motivated by his story to make a difference. I sat captured as I listened to the children's stories of how they raised money for the project: a grinding mill for his village. Some brought their tooth fairy money, others went door to door, some did bake sales, and others gave their allowance for a year. All of them sacrificed in one way or another. They were so motivated they raised almost double their goal!
Today, Arok is invited to speak at schools almost every week. He is influencing American children powerfully through his life which started in tragedy. Arok is an example of a powerful life lived for the Audience of One because in the midst of his tragedy, he trained his ear to listen for the voice and direction of his heavenly Father, as he knew his own earthly father had perished in the village massacre.
The power of One Life lived for the Audience of One will change the world one person at a time.