By Candice Smith, M.S.
What Ripple Effect Are You?
Prior to church service this past weekend, a gentleman approached me and stated, “You are famous! I watch your Facebook Live videos at work and my co-workers noticed your videos on my cell phone. They are now following you on social media!” I was surprised because I assumed only my closest friends and family were the ones watching my videos.
Several weeks earlier, I began posting Facebook Live videos because I wanted to brighten people’s days, speak words of encouragement, tell my testimony, remain honest and discuss real emotions we all experience, discuss how we see ourselves, etc.
I began to realize this is a platform God has provided for me when I began having several friends send messages such as:
- “Your words are a daily reminder for me that everything will be okay.”
- “When you go live, your message is exactly what I need to hear—at that exact moment.”
- “You are so real and discuss the topics many of us try to avoid.”
- “Your videos are the first thing I look forward to, in the mornings.”
During the same time I began my live videos, I began working at my current place of employment. I prayed to God that He would help me to be an example to my new coworkers. Matthew 5:16 says, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
Ten years ago, I would have been the employee who would gossip or speak “gutter” talk. I was the employee who was told to “be mindful when the boss walks by!” I was the employee who would watch my mouth around the “holy rollers.” I was the employee who was uncomfortable discussing Christ because I did not have a personal relationship with Christ. I went to church, was baptized and would say, “Yes, I believe in God.” But that was the extent of my acknowledgment. I did not understand what having a true and personal relationship with Christ looked like.
It was not until we began attending a different church that my eyes were opened to the difference of saying I am a Christian versus actually walking the Christian walk. When I desired to actually have a personal relationship with Christ, my thoughts, behaviors, and actions began to change. I no longer needed to use a checkmark to check off the do’s and don’ts of being a Christian. Once I developed a relationship with Christ and drew closer to Him, my desires for worldly gain began to fall to the side. Once I elevated Christ to the throne, I dethroned myself because two kings cannot occupy one throne.
A ripple effect is a spreading effect or series of consequences caused by a single action or event. There are positive ripple effects and negative ripple effects that are produced from our activities. I could either be the person that spreads gossip, “gutter” talk, and negative attitudes or I could be the person who spreads compassion, words of encouragement, and love.
God had a bigger plan for me. He knew that my platform of spreading His Word would be greater than my previous ignorance. He knew the consequences of my personal relationship with His Son would cause such a stirring in my heart that I would not be able to contain it!
Titus 2:7-8 states, “In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.”
So, are you causing positive ripple effects or negative ripple effects in your life?
Candice Smith is a Counselor Associate at FBC Jackson, Contract Counselor at HRBC of Florence, and Youth Court Counselor for DHS, Madison County. She resides in Rankin County with her husband and daughter. She also writes for The Mississippi Collegian newspaper.