Last week we had the opportunity to celebrate Hispanic heritage month at a very well-executed ceremony at the Leaders Club. As I sat and enjoyed the program, I was impressed by the number of Hispanic-Americans who have had an impact on our society.
Most notably in my mind this day were the essays by the winning High School and Middle School students. The Middle School winner talked about how recording artist Carlos Santana has inspired her creatively and has enriched her life and service to others. Equally impressive was the High School winner who wrote about her HispanicJunior High school principal who was not only an inspiration and role-model but also helped her excel in school and achieve far beyond average success. These students represent just two who have been positively impacted by Hispanic-Americans. We would not have the space in this paper to include all of those who would have similar or even greater testimony to the contributions of Hispanics on us and our culture.
Added to the Hispanics are the myriad other ethnic groups that come together to form this great country of the United States, each with their corporate contributions to society and individual torch-bearers for what is good from their heritage.
As I reflected on these thoughts later in the day, I wondered if I have ever, or would ever have the kind of impact on a person that I would be the subject of their essay. Let me be quick to say that I’m not looking for notoriety, but I would like to know that I have had a positive influence on those around me. If we just go through life for ourselves, not impacting others, what real, eternal, value is there to life?
As a Chaplain, or more specifically as a Christian, I would hope that God is working through me to impact others. In fact, New Testament Scripture teaches us that as Christians, God’s children, we are to be Christ-like and this Christ-likeness should not only be noticed by others but should also draw others to Christ and impact them with His Gospel message.
What does your life look like? Aside from the heritage that might be yours from your ethnic background, how about your Christian heritage, is it forming your life to be what God would have it to be? Is it influencing others to greatness?
I encourage you to join me in seeking the Father of all and asking Him to use you as a positive force in your community, among your friends and within your family. Let God mold you, empower you, and use you to accomplish His good will. Let’s look forward to the day when we hear someone talk about us as the one who helped them become who they are!
(by Chaplain (CPT) Daryl Densford. Originally published 22 Sep 05 in The Turret, Fort Knox, KY )