The Power of One

Then the men of Israel and Judah surged forward with a shout and pursued the Philistines to the entrance of Gath and to the gates of Ekron. Their dead were strewn along the Shaaraim road to Gath and Ekron. 1 Samuel 17:52


Illustration

On Thursday, December 1, 1955, the 42-year-old Rosa Parks was commuting home from a long day of work at the Montgomery Fair department store by bus. Black residents of Montgomery often avoided municipal buses if possible because they found the Negroes-in-back policy so demeaning. Nonetheless, 70 percent or more riders on a typical day were Black, and on this day Rosa Parks was one of them. When asked to give her seat to a white man, Rosa refused and was subsequently arrested. On December 5, Parks was found guilty of violating segregation laws, given a suspended sentence and fined $10 plus $4 in court costs.


All it takes is for one person to take a stand for change to take place. We should not underestimate the power that lives within us despite our socio-economic status. Every significant event that has occurred since the beginning of time began with one person. One person can change a community, a city or a country. One person redeemed humanity from eternal damnation. It takes one person to proclaim the name of Christ for others to make a decision to follow Jesus. We are not as powerless as we may think, at times.


When Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on that Bus in Montgomery, she did not know her stand against racial injustice was going to change this country and the world. From her perspective she was just a woman who was too tired to give up her seat on that bus after a long day of work. By standing up for herself she stood for everyone who has been marginalized, persecuted, and oppressed. Because she stood up, my children have unlimited opportunities to live out their God-given abilities in this country.


In today’s text, David defeats the giant Goliath. When David was told that the Israelite army was afraid to face the Philistines on the battlefield because of Goliath, he enthusiastically volunteered to go face the giant. His act of bravery changed the battle and gave courage to the Israelites to chase the Philistines and defeated them. But when David told his brothers he wanted to be part of the military campaign, they rebuked him and told him to go tend the sheep. They did not see the greatness in David.


We cannot wait for anyone to validate or acknowledge the greatness that is in us. We just have to do great things and give them time to catch up. Many people are so accustomed to mediocrity and failure they cannot envision greatness. Their spirits are seared with negativity and they become blinded by fear. Thus, it is necessary for believers to demonstrate hopeful optimism even when the situation is challenging. We have to operate with confidence even when our faith is tested.


You have the power to change the world. Whatever your profession, you have the power to influence the way people do their jobs in a positive and constructive way. We should spend more time looking for solutions than assigning blame. Just as we have the power to do great things, we also have the power to be destructive. Rosa Parks and many others in the Civil Rights movements went to prison and paid a great price for people of Africa descent to have their Civil Rights. Those who resisted the Civil Rights movement were very powerful people. They used their power destructively. But good always triumph over evil.


The question is not if you have power, but how are you going to use your power. Jesus wants us to use our power to transform the world into the kingdom of God. He gave us power over demonic forces so we tear the devil’s kingdom apart and proclaim the salvation of the Lord. Thus He gave the disciple dynamite power in Acts 1:8. So, it’s time for you to stop thinking and acting as if you are powerless and start living powerfully.


Questions for Personal Reflection

How can you use your God-given power to bless your family and your community?

What lesson have you learned from David’s bravery?


Prayer- Blessed Lord, I think you for reminding me of the power you have given me to make this world a better place. Please give me the courage to stand up for righteousness and justice when I see injustice. May I not be afraid to face the giants of racism, sexism, and classism. Let your power be manifested in me so I can relief to the captives and hope to the hopeless through Christ Jesus.

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