This morning at breakfast, my husband said, “Do you know what catalyst means?”
The dictionary definition: A catalyst is an event or person causing a change.
My husband was sharing with me that one of the co-founders of Tesla, Elon Musk, after graduating from college, wanted to do something that would most affect the future in a positive way. He asked himself, “What is really going to have an important effect on humanity as a whole?” He went on a journey to make a car that runs on electric instead of gasoline. His desire was not to get wealthy; it was to contribute to humanity in a positive way and to perhaps be a catalyst of change for other car manufacturing companies in order to expedite and shorten the time it would normally take to manufacture viable electric cars in the future. Initially, most people did not believe that it was possible to make a car that runs on electric, which looks good, and had a good range of performance. In addition, skeptics believed that even if you did make an electric car, it would not sell because of people’s love for gasoline.
In spite of the comments, Tesla went on to make a model car that meets all of the skeptic’s criteria. They believed that if you build it and people see it, they would more likely choose it.
The conversation that my husband and I were having this morning triggered me to think about God’s purpose for the nation of Israel. God’s purpose in choosing Israel was for them to be a model nation to other nations and that through them, all the families of the earth would be blessed (Genesis 12:3). It was a nation in whom would come Jesus, the Messiah, who would offer salvation to the world!
God desired His people to reflect His loving and compassionate nature by helping strangers, widows, orphans and the poor. He wanted all the nations of the world to know Him and to be blessed! Israel was to be a light, a model, among the nations. God wanted all the peoples of the earth to see the wisdom of how His people live by God’s given standards. God wanted them to see His blessings upon His people and even His discipline upon His people when they strayed away from Him.
Right before entering the Promise Land, Moses encouraged them with these words:
“...I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live; that you may love the LORD your God, that you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for He is your life and the length of your days…” Deuteronomy 30:19
“Israel was on the verge of a momentous occasion. Not only were they preparing to enter the Promise Land and conquer its inhabitants, they were also preparing to establish a brand new culture. The primary focus of this new culture would be on the living God. Every part of it would reflect His nature. In the Promise Land, God planned to bless the Israelites abundantly. In turn, He expected the Israelites to live responsibly, in a culture unlike any that had preceded it.” Commentary
However, the Bible tells us that many times instead of Israel being the change maker, the catalyst to draw nations to know the only living God, His people forsook God and indulged to learn about the pagan gods of the nations surrounding them.
God has a bright future for the people of Israel. But not only does He have a bright future for the nation of Israel, but God has a bright future for ALL who come to Him through Jesus Christ! God still wants His people to be change makers! He wants His people to be lights not so that they can glorify themselves, but so that they can show the world that there is a living God who cares for them, who loves them and wants to bless them through His Son.
How can we make a positive effect upon humanity? One way is by being transformed! In Romans 12:2 the Bible says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and an acceptable and perfect will of God.”
Are you impacting this world in a positive way for Christ? Or, is this world impacting you?
Do you want to do something that would most affect the future in a positive way? Then ask God this, "How can I be used to impact this world in a positive way for Christ?"
Catalyst: A Person or event that causes change or action.
“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16