Charles H.‭ ‬Dyer

B. Childress
Feb 17 2013


Can one person make a difference‭?  ‬Yes,‭ ‬if that individual is a man or woman of‭ ‬integrity.‭  ‬If that individual shines as a
light in a dark world.‭  ‬If that individual displays the character of Jesus Christ in word…and deed.‭  ‬God specializes in
changing the world one person at a time.

The prophet Micah lived in dark days.‭  ‬Corruption and compromise marked the nation of Judah.‭  “‬Her leaders judge for a
bribe,‭ ‬her priests teach for a price,‭ ‬and her prophets tell fortunes for money‭” (‬Micah‭ ‬3:11‭)‬.‭  ‬The nation careened out of
control,‭ ‬plunging down a treacherous path that could end only in catastrophe.‭  “‬Therefore because of you,‭ ‬Zion will be
plowed like a field,‭ ‬Jerusalem will become a heap of rubble,‭ ‬the temple hill a mound overgrown with thickets‭” (‬Micah‭ ‬3:

Yet God called Micah to be different…to stand as a model of integrity and righteousness.‭  ‬After describing society’s
moral cesspool,‭ ‬Micah announced his willingness to stand alone for the truth.‭  “‬But as for me,‭ ‬I am filled with power,‭ ‬with
the Spirit of the Lord,‭ ‬and with justice and might,‭ ‬to declare to Jacob his transgression,‭ ‬to Israel his sin‭” (‬Micah‭ ‬3:8‭)‬.

But what can one person do alone‭?  ‬How can one individual make a difference‭?  ‬Micah doesn’t provide the answer,‭ ‬but
another prophet does.‭  ‬A century after Micah,‭ ‬Jeremiah the prophet also stood alone to face a nation collectively spitting
in the face of God.‭  ‬On one particular occasion Jeremiah delivered an impassioned message to those gathered in the
temple in Jerusalem.‭  ‬When he finished,‭ ‬a crowd seized him and screamed,‭ “‬You must die‭!” (‬Jeremiah‭ ‬26:8‭)‬.‭  ‬Many
expected a swift trial…and certain death.‭  ‬But some of the elders stepped forward to defend Jeremiah.‭  ‬They compared
his words to those spoken a century earlier by Micah.

‭“‬Some of the elders of the land stepped forward and said to the entire assembly of people,‭ ‘‬Micah of Moresheth
prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah.‭  ‬He told all the people of Judah,‭ “‬This is what the Lord
Almighty says‭”’” (‬Jeremiah‭ ‬26:17-18‭)‬.‭  ‬Micah’s words stood the test of time.‭  ‬People remembered the message long after
Micah was gone.‭  ‬But Micah’s prophecies had done more than merely fill heads with knowledge.‭  ‬Micah single-handedly
changed an entire generation‭!

After quoting Micah’s prophecy of judgment‭ (‬Micah‭ ‬3:12‭)‬,‭ ‬the elders reminded the mob of the impact Micah’s message
had made on the people to whom he spoke.‭  “‬Did Hezekiah king of Judah or anyone else in Judah put him to death‭?  ‬Did
not Hezekiah fear the Lord and seek his favor‭?  ‬And did not the Lord relent,‭ ‬so that he did not bring the disaster he
pronounced against them‭?  ‬We are about to bring a terrible disaster on ourselves‭!” (‬Jeremiah‭ ‬26:19‭)‬.

Micah may have stood alone,‭ ‬but his message had an impact on his nation‭!  ‬Micah’s willingness to stand for what was
right…to swim against the current…changed an entire generation.‭  ‬God held back His judgment because a nation
repented in response to Micah’s words and deeds.‭  ‬One man made a difference‭!


Life brings change.‭  ‬Where you live.‭  ‬Where you work.‭  ‬How you dress.‭  ‬All these can,‭ ‬and often do,‭ ‬change over time.‭  ‬
Flexibility and adaptability are two traits that can help us respond to the accelerating rate of change taking place all
around us.

But some things must never change.‭  ‬Integrity should never go out of style.‭  ‬Christlike character remains God’s standard
for those who claim His Son as their Savior.‭  ‬Your commitment to a lifestyle patterned after Jesus Christ must never

The world offers‭ “‬the good life,‭” ‬God gives eternal life.‭  ‬The world emphasizes‭ “‬doing,‭” ‬God emphasizes‭ “‬being.‭”  ‬The
world stresses achievement,‭ ‬God stresses integrity.‭  ‬The world pressures to conform,‭ ‬God seeks to transform.‭  ‬
The world focuses on the outward signs of‭ “‬success,‭” ‬God focuses on the inner qualities of the‭ ‬

Like a skilled physician,‭ ‬Chuck Swindoll looked past the symptoms to diagnose the true problem.

    As I wade through the success propaganda written today,‭ ‬again and again the focus of attention is on one’s outer
    self‭ – ‬how smart I can appear,‭ ‬what a good impression I can make,‭ ‬how much I can own or how totally I can control
    or how fast I can be promoted or…or…or.‭  ‬Nothing I read‭ – ‬and I mean‭ ‬nothing‭ – ‬places emphasis on the heart,‭ ‬
    the inner being,‭ ‬the seed plot of our thoughts,‭ ‬motives,‭ ‬decisions.‭  ‬Nothing,‭ ‬that is,‭ ‬except Scripture.

    Interestingly,‭ ‬the Bible says little about success,‭ ‬but a lot about the heart,‭ ‬the place where true success originates.

Think of this book as a spiritual‭ “‬stress test.‭”  ‬Throughout the book you have been experiencing God’s treadmill of
integrity.‭   ‬God has been monitoring all your spiritual vital signs,‭ ‬checking for any irregularities.‭  ‬Back in the Great
Physician’s office,‭ ‬you hear the diagnosis…and prognosis.

The Great Physician notes areas of strength…and weakness.‭  ‬Some lifestyle changes are necessary for complete
spiritual health.‭  ‬But now the book is finished…the examination is over.‭  ‬As you walk from the office,‭ ‬you know that the
decision to change,‭ ‬or not to change,‭ ‬is one that only you can make.

William Longstaff,‭ ‬an English businessman,‭ ‬made a decision to live a life of integrity and holiness.‭  ‬He wrote down on
paper a simple poem explaining what living such a life meant to him…and years later his poem,‭ “‬Take time to Be Holy,‭” ‬
was set to music.‭  ‬As William and Randy Petersen discovered,‭ ‬this simple poem‭ “‬may have been the only poem he ever
wrote.‭  …‬A businessman at heart,‭ ‬Longstaff wrote no flowery or pious-sounding verses,‭ ‬but these down-to-earth

Read Longstaff’s words carefully…and make them your own as you decide‭ ‬
now to live a life of integrity.

    ‭“‬Take Time to Be Holy‭”

    Take time to be holy,‭ ‬speak oft with thy Lord‭;
    Abide in Him always,‭ ‬and feed on His Word.
    Make friends of God’s children‭; ‬help those who are weak‭;
    Forgetting in nothing His blessing to seek.

    Take time to be holy,‭ ‬the world rushes on‭;
    Much time spend in secret with Jesus alone‭;
    By looking to Jesus,‭ ‬like Him thou shalt be‭;
    Thy friends in thy conduct His likeness shall see.

    Take time to be holy,‭ ‬let Him be thy guide,
    And run not before Him whatever betide‭;
    In joy or in sorrow still follow thy Lord,
    And,‭ ‬looking to Jesus,‭ ‬still trust in His Word.

    Take time to be holy,‭ ‬be calm in thy soul‭;
    Each thought and each motive beneath His control‭;
    Thus led by His Spirit to fountains of love,
    Thou soon shalt be fitted for service above.


CHARACTER COUNTS,‭ ‬by Charles H.‭ ‬Dyer,‭ ‬Copyright‭ ‬2010,‭ ‬Moody Publishers.