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Stop Multiplying Your To-Do List and Multiply Your Impact: 10 Steps to Increase Your Influence

Often, we find ourselves running the rat race of life. The dishes are piling high but not as high as the laundry. On any given day we’re a teacher, chauffeur, therapist, negotiator, and chef. We try to stay abreast of it all, while new demands are being made of us daily; if not from our jobs and homes, then from schools and the government officials with ever-changing pandemic guidelines. We wake up earlier and stay up later, to no avail. What gives?

This past week God repeatedly gave me the phrase “be fruitful and multiply.” We often regard this as the first commandment God ever gave man (Gen 9:7). However, as I prayed, God offered a different perspective, one that demands faith and accountability for multiplied impact.

Every day we have a choice to multiply our joys or multiply our sorrows. We can increase wisdom by sharing ideas or breed frustration by doing things alone. We can multiply impact by delegating or we can compound resentment by adding to our to-do list. We can wish for more hours in a day, or we can surrender ourselves to God and allow Him to channel our energy, effort and focus on what matters to multiply our impact. “Be fruitful and multiply” is a command that connects obedience to blessing.

This command calls us to higher levels of stewardship. We are to be good stewards of all that we have: our words, our emotions, our possessions, our time, our yeses, and our nos. Partnering with God in everyday life will have you doing less and accomplishing more.

Things in our life are multiplied in two ways, by our hand or by God’s.

God reminded me of the Parable of the Talents. A man entrusted his wealth to his servants. Each one did what they thought was right in their own eyes. One doubled his portion. One took a moderate risk and was blessed, the last one saw investing as too risky, so he did nothing (Matthew 25:14-30).

God then turned my attention to His ability to multiply what we give him in obedience. Jesus commanded His disciples to feed 5,000 people with five loaves of bread and two fish. Can you imagine? I don’t know about yours, but my family of five can clear a loaf of bread for lunch! Regardless of how the disciples felt, they obeyed and a miracle occurred, everyone had plenty to eat and was “satisfied” (Matthew 14:13-21). God exponentially multiplied the impact of his obedient disciples and God desires to do the same thing in our lives.

Influential people in the Bible did these 10 things to multiply their impact:

1. They humbled themselves- They recognized God was calling them to a work they couldn’t accomplish alone.

2. They were in regular communion with God- To hear God’s voice, you must know God’s voice, to know God’s voice, you must be in his presence regularly.

3. They prayed- Before making key decisions, even small ones, they prayed for wisdom, discernment, and direction.

4. They were patient- They learned to wait. Noah waited decades for the flood (Gen. 6:3). Joseph waited 13 years for his dream to come true (Gen 41:46).

5. They remained steadfast and persistent- They never gave up. Jacob wrestled God until he was blessed (Gen. 32). Moses never stopped walking until they reached the promised land.

6. They fasted for greater clarity and understanding- Fasting elevates awareness and focuses attention. Some of the most impactful people in the Bible fasted for clarity, deliverance, protection, wisdom, and preparation (Esther 4).

7. They reminded themselves of God’s faithful history- Each time David slipped into depression he reminded himself of God’s faithfulness throughout the Psalms.

8. They trusted the plan they couldn’t fully see or understand- Job’s world was completely rocked, yet he trusted God’s faithfulness (Job 13:15).

9. They accepted their shortcomings- The most impactful people in the Bible recognized they didn’t have all the answers, but they knew the one who did; so, they did what they could with what they had, and trusted God would do the rest.

10. They consulted God before others- Instead of seeking out trusted friends and relatives first, they prayed. They didn’t allow their judgment to be clouded by the opinions and expectations of others. There is a time to seek counsel, but our first counsel should always be God.

“God doesn’t want the best; he wants the willing.”

When we go before God, we are partnering with the one who holds time in his hands, the one who can take anything we give him and multiply it to have exponential impact. God doesn’t want the best; he wants the willing. God’s not asking you to do things on your own; he’s asking you to partner with him so he can lend you his strength, wisdom, ability, and resources. If you want to increase your impact it will require you to admit that you can’t achieve the greatness God is calling you to, alone. Such greatness requires partnership with God.


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