The Gospel of Matthew, starting with a list of genealogies, names, can seem like a boring way to begin the New Testament. Some of these names – like Abraham, Ruth, David, Jehoshaphat and Josiah – are well know names and therefore are easily remember from Old Testament scriptures. Some of the names, – like Shealtiel, Azor or Matthan – never seem to be referenced and little is known about them. Though some individuals seemed to play more active roles in the history of Israel, each individual listed in Matthew chapter one had a role to play in bringing about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Each individual influenced at least one person, their next successor, someone from the next generation. The end result was the birth of the Jesus Christ, whose life and teaching is changing the whole world.
Sometimes we can feel that we have little influence, that we are people who are unknown by anyone else. We may feel that no one listens to us, that we have little affect on the world around us. These little known and seemingly insignificant people in the genealogy of Jesus may have felt the same way also, but looking back we see that they were a part of a bigger picture of what God is doing.
Perhaps the greatest influence that you could have is just one person from the next generation after you, or the person next to you. You might be just one person in the list of many names, but by being a godly influence to just one person you may be affecting the whole world.
Take a moment to consider whom God would have you to reach out to. Ask God to help you to influence that person in a Godly way.