When I first met Will, his keychain was nothing but a link.
As in a chain link.
I found it interesting, and asked him about it on one of our first outings.
What he told me stayed with me forever, long after he gave the link to a young adult who had recently surrendered to the ministry and needed the visual reminder.
I pray it stays with you today, too.
As he held up the smooth, shiny link he said,
“This is my reminder that we’re a link in the chain.
Sometimes we’ll never see that the seeds we’ve planted have bloomed into something fruitful. Other times, we get to play a role in harvesting the seeds someone else had planted.
We’re just a link in someone’s story. “
I completely loved him then and there, and love the visual reminder of the role we play in the lives of others.
The Bible is full of links in the chain that bring us the story of Christ.
From Boaz marrying Ruth, to a Shepard boy being crowned king. Story after story, link after link, God weaves the chains of his story to point us to Jesus.
Similarly, there’s lots of links that have pointed me to Jesus over the years.
When I think about my own life, there are several distinctive “links” that encouraged me in the Lord.
What’s funny is, sometimes you don’t even realize what a big link a person was in your life until years later.
I told Will just the other day what a big link brother Tony and miss Okie were in my life as a child.
At the time, they were just my Sunday school teachers. The ones that have me candy for memorizing scripture, verses I still remember even today.
Now that I’m an adult, I realize what a sacrifice it was for them to create a lesson and teach it to rowdy kids week in and week out.
But look at the harvest the Lord produced through their obedience!
Many of the rowdy kids they taught became Sunday school teachers of themselves!
They were in my life just a short time, but were a big link.
I think about Ken and Miss Kathy, Todd and Sonja, and Eric and April.
Just this morning I thought about Cindy, who opened her house up so we teenage girls could have a bible study together and dig deeper into the word. She had kids of her own to tend to, but loved the Lord so much and loved that teenage girls wanted to know Him more.
I think about crying my eyes out in the church parlor with her, struggling with doubts about my salvation and what a rock of reassurance she was by submitting to the Lord and letting Him speak through her.
I hadn’t thought about her in a long time.
Yet, when I stop and contemplate my spiritual growth over the years, the Lord brings countless names of the workers He sent to me over the years. That encouraged me and helped me grow in the Lord.
Nothing from their own power, but through their surrender to God.
So many, many names. So many, many stories.
I share just a handful of my links today to remind us both of a very important truth.
We are most certainly links in the chain for the lives of those around us whether we realize it or not.
Are we pointing people to Christ?
Are we investing in those around us?
Sometimes the smallest of gestures can be monumental to the overall chain in a person’s life.
It’s important our hearts are open to the Holy Spirit’s call, and that we are obedient to whatever He asks.
It’s important we realize we may not ever see how God worked in that person’s life.
We might be a seed planter and never hear how the story ends. Other times, we reap the benefit of harvesting a crop planted long before.
We must never grow weary in our investment of others. It is the Lord who works in the hearts of others, it is our job to be obedient.
To be that link.
To share listening ears.
To buy that cup of coffee.
To teach that rowdy children’s Sunday school class.
To do whatever He asks in submission to His great glory.
Anything at all.