“Remind the people of Judah and Jerusalem about the terms of my covenant with them…” Then the Lord said, “Broadcast this message in the streets of Jerusalem. Go from town to town throughout the land and say, ‘Remember the ancient covenant, and do everything it requires.’ ” (Jeremiah 11:2,6)
Relate: What you are doing today determines who you will become tomorrow.
John Maxwell, probably the greatest contemporary author on leadership out there, said that if we want to change the course of our life, we must change our daily habits. A great example of this principle is Sheryl Harris. Eventually, she would become a Pulitzer prize winning columnist for the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Before she got there, she found herself as one among many bit piece reporters for a much smaller Akron, Ohio, paper. She didn’t simply wait for her moment to come, she embraced every story with the urgency and conviction that those involved in that story would feel. One such early story that crossed her desk was a missing person’s report placed at the local police station.
This potential news piece came to her notice late in the news cycle and Sheryl had to work fast and hard to get what she could before the paper had to go to the presses. She went above and beyond collecting information and pictures, but also helped to set up a hotline that would be ready by the time the paper was hitting the newsstands. Two different people, a convenience store clerk and a gas station attendant, saw this picture and called the hotline. Police said that if it was not for Sheryl’s fast work and effort, Jessica Repp probably would not have been found. The thing is, Sheryl Harris doesn’t even remember if she put her name on the story’s byline. Although she would go on to write many more influential pieces, for at least one family, this was the most important article she would write. It revealed the greatness others would eventually recognize in her.
React: It is easy to think that we will do great things if only we were given great opportunities. The thing is, working greatly through the little things is what creates in our lives those great opportunities. On the flip side, when we are lazy or shirk our duties in the little things because they are so small, we are guaranteeing that we will always live in obscurity and mediocrity. Those great opportunities will never come our way.
Little by little, step by step,the nation of Judah had wandered away from the covenant they had made with God. Their northern neighbor, Israel, backslid in quick and drastic ways. For Judah, it was more of a gradual erosion. It was like the steady falling away of a receding tide. Some waves (or kings) might do better than the one before, but eventually, bit by bit, they are all falling away. Through Jeremiah God was warning them that they are on the road to destruction. If they want to get off, they need to return to the covenant of holiness they once upheld. The same still rings true for us. Today’s actions determine tomorrow’s destiny.
I am so glad that You don’t let me stay who I am. I am so glad that You see something in me beyond what I have been. My past is riddled with failures. My present is wallowing in untapped potential. Help me to live in the present what You see for my future. Help me to live out now what You are calling me to become. With every step I take on this journey of life help me to walk closer to You.