There's an interesting passage of scripture in Romans. Paul wrote
"For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man's obedience many will be made righteous." (Romans 5:19)
Of course, this passage is talking about Adam and Jesus. Sin came into the world as a result of the disobedience of Adam. Our righteousness became possible as a result of Jesus Christ's obedient sacrifice. Paul even referred to Jesus as "the second Adam."
While the above scripture is speaking specifically of Jesus, I believe that it states a principle that applies to all of us: Our obedience or disobedience can affect others people’s eternal destiny.
What if Billy Graham had disobeyed God's call on his life? What if Lottie Moon had chosen to ignore God's call to go to China as a missionary. Think of all the thousands of people who may have never accepted Christ without the faithfulness and obedience of these two saints.
You don't have to look to high profile evangelists and missionaries to see the significance of this truth. What if the people who led you to the Lord had not been faithful. None of us found the Lord in a vacuum. Our eternal destinies were influenced by the obedient lives of others.
As we contemplate all the "what ifs," we eventually have to confront the issue of our own obedience. Each of us has a circle of influence. There are people within that circle that will be either be brought closer to the Lord or pushed farther from him as a result of our obedience or disobedience.
What is it in your life that you need to be obedient to? Are their issues in your life the Lord is dealing with you about? I hope so. Since he started on me he's never let up.
The truth is there is more at stake in your obedience to the Lord's call than your own future. There are people who are depending on you. I know that my eternal destiny was positively influenced by parents, grandparents, and great grandparents who loved the Lord and were obedient to pass along a heritage of faith. What a staggering thought it is to realize that you and I have the power to influence the eternal destiny of not only those whom we know, but of generations yet unborn.
We live by choice. Will we choose to influence others through our disobedience or our obedience? Each of us will leave a legacy. The question is, will it be a legacy of obedience or disobedience. We all are faced with the same challenge that Joshua issued to the people of Israel: “…choose you this day whom ye will serve.” My prayer is that we will say with Joshua, “as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Josh. 24:15)