Audience of One   1 comment

I have to admit, I love the song Audience of One.  I have heard so many people sing it that I honestly don’t know who deserves original credit.  I’ll go further to admit that I am not entirely familiar with all of the lyrics.  What I find in myself is that I get so caught up in the phrase, that my soul sticks to it and won’t let go.

This recently emerged in a quiet time and has been fluctuating between conviction, challenge, and inspiration.How could the phrase “Audience of One” convict me?  One problem most leaders face is what I call “The Trap of Self-Importance.”  I do find it essential to pray for yourself and carry a good sense of self-esteem as a leader.  Let’s face it, if leadership self-confidence is lacking, there won’t be much following!  The “trap” is taking this confidence to heart and forgetting the true Source of your abilities. 

The ego is a powerful thing.  It has the ability to bring you to proper levels of humility and patience while possessing the capacity to shut out the rest of the world while you anticipate everything being focused upon you.  We have all seen the illustration that the letter “i” is the center of sin, but the letter “i” is also the center of pride.  I personally believe that all sin is centered in pride.  Intentional sin is coming to the conclusion that you know better than God for a particular situation or activity.  Pride.

I remember during my teenage rebellion years that when ever I actually took some time to remember God in my life, I would basically tell the Lord, “It’s OK.  I’ll bring this one to you.  Don’t worry, I won’t fall into the same trap that so-and-so is in.”  This was never met by success.  In fact, that attitude only increased my failings.

This remains true in leadership today.  I am a very relationship oriented person.  Sometimes, I find myself wondering why I wasn’t thanked for something or told I did a good job.  SNAP!  Oh yea, there goes that trap again.  Sometimes I wonder why my ideas aren’t completely accepted as presented.  SNAP!  Other times, I question my own effectiveness as a Pastor, leader, parent and even husband.  SNAP! 

Each SNAP brings conviction because I know better.

How does the phrase “Audience of One” challenge me?  I feel challenged by the “Audience of One” because I know that my audience is supposed to be God alone.  He is the One that I should be trying to please.  He is the One that I should be working for.  He is the One that deserves all credit for all things.  He is the One who has granted me the capacities and spiritual gifts to do the things I do in His name and for His glory.  If I dare to take His credit, I am guilty of pride and must repent of this trap that I have led myself directly into.

I suppose that part of the challenge also revolves around vision.  Being a visionary leader with a rather vivid imagination can present an interesting set of challenges.  The first most obvious challenge is to discern differences between my own vision with God’s vision.  I often find myself coming up with an idea and immediately asking the question, “Was that God or Dave?”  Thankfully, my ‘self’ doesn’t answer (OK, often) or I’d have an entirely different set of challenges.

What I find is that the conviction leads to the challenge.  This allows me to really take a serious look at my priority in life.  If I am correctly remembering, you cannot make the word “priority” plural in the Greek.  After realizing that God has not been my priority causes me to really concentrate on bringing my focus back to the Lord.  This is the John 3:30 event – Jesus must increase and I must decrease.  That one phrase from John the Baptizer helps me overcome the conviction, be reminds me of the challenge, and also helps me to focus on the inspiration of it all.

How does the phrase “Audience of One” inspire me?  To me, this is enhanced when I remember part of the connotation of Abba – a “daddy” kind of feeling.  I have been cheered and booed by crowds large and small (sports, not church, unless the sound of crickets where ‘amens’ should be counts as a boo).  Through it all, I always knew that cheering me on was my Mom.  As a kid and youth, I thought that she was my biggest fan.  As an adult and minister, I still get tempted to think the same.  But there is One who is a much bigger fan for me than even Mom.  We call him God.

If God’s word is true in saying that nothing can separate us from His love, then how could we not get excited about the knowledge of His very presence?  Since we know God’s word is indeed true, then what I find true in my walk with the Lord is a sense of comfort.  Not only does God love me, but He cares so much for me that He is willing to allow me to be a small part of His kingdom work here on earth. 

He wants what is best for us all.  He wants us to be and do good.  When I think of the 23rd Psalm, I cannot help but focus on His presence in the valley.  If my focus is on my relationship with my God, then this Audience of One is much more than an audience to me.  For the most part, audiences are a collection of relatively quiet observers.  God is much more than that.  He is Lord, Counselor, Faithful Friend, Savior, Comforter, and so much more.  His presence with us while we walk with Him serves to remind us that He truly believes in us!

You can have all of the family, friends, groups and crowds that you desire.  But give me The Audience of One!

One response to “Audience of One

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  1. Hey Dave:

    Great blog you have here! Your personality shines through every post. May your “Audience of One” be glorified through your posts, even as you gain an audience of many grateful readers!

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