All It Takes Is One
February 1, 2007 - Three hundred and forty-six people were killed in a plane crash in France a few years ago. A cargo door didn’t shut just right. The door was not large, but it was important enough to cause a mighty jetliner to plunge to earth. Just one little thing—a more reliable door latch—might have made the difference.
A Message by Billy Graham
If he had received one more electoral vote, Aaron Burr would have become President of the United States. One vote brought Texas into the Union. One vote kept Andrew Johnson from being impeached.
Joan of Arc was only one woman, but she saved France. Martin Luther was one man, but he nailed 95 theses on the church door at Wittenberg and altered the course of European history.
One man, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, with nothing but a pen in hand, stood up against the entire Soviet Empire. They didn’t know what to do with him. He didn’t stand with a gun; he stood with moral courage. The whole world admired him, even if it did not agree with everything he said.
Today in America, Canada, Britain, Australia, New Zealand, there might be a young man who could turn his nation upside down for Christ. Or a young woman whom God could mightily use to help fill the great spiritual vacuum we see developing in Western society.
A Handful of Farmers
All it takes is one. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Every link is necessary. You are a link in God’s chain, in God’s plan to proclaim the Gospel to the whole world. Are you ready? All you need is God. If you are totally surrendered and totally dedicated, you can say, “Lord, here’s my hand with all I have.” God has a place for you. He can use you.
Remember the story of Gideon in the Bible? In Judges 6-7, we read that God spoke to him one day and said, “Gideon, I want you to lead My people, to be their judge and their leader. If you will be My man, I will be with you and we will defeat the armies of the enemies of Israel.”
Gideon’s reply was basically, “I’m not equipped for this. I can’t do this. I’m not even a soldier; I’m a farmer. How can I go out and do all of this?” But he put out a fleece, got an answer and then put together a force of 32,000 armed men. But God said he had too many, so Gideon cut down the size of his army. Then God said again, “You’ve got too many. You still have to cut down.” And He showed Gideon how to do it. By the time the screening was finished, Gideon had only 300 men, and God said, “There’s your army.”
“What?” said Gideon in effect. “Me, go out with a handful of farmers against those thousands of Midianites?” The Lord’s answer was that Gideon was not to take any weapons, only trumpets and pitchers with lamps in them. So one night the 300 warriors went to the Midianite camp, and at a signal they blew the trumpets, exposed the torches, and the enemy became confused. Panic and disorder ensued, and a mighty victory took place.
They Answered God’s Call
Or, look at Noah. He spent years building the ark, but who believed in him? God told him to build the ship on dry land, and Noah knew that people would say he was crazy. But he didn’t argue with God. He went to work, and I imagine that all the years he was building he preached repentance: “Judgment is coming! Turn to God while you can!”
On the last day, Noah and his family went into the ark and God shut the door. The clouds appeared, the rain fell and lightning flashed. People may have beat on the door of the ark, but it was too late.
Consider Abraham. God said to him, “I want you to take all your family and possessions and move to a land called Canaan” (Cf. Genesis 12:1). Abraham lived in Haran. But by faith, the Scripture tells us, he left everything he had ever known and went to Canaan, just because God told him to. And God used him to found a mighty nation.
I wonder how Joseph’s father would have felt if he had known that his son had been sold into slavery in Egypt. He might have said, “My prayers have not been answered.” Slavery in Egypt was certainly not the way he would have planned his son’s life. But God knew that one day Joseph would rise to be prime minister of Egypt and would provide food for Israel in time of famine. And God was doing all the planning.
Moses was 80 years old, living on the backside of the desert when God came to him one day. God said, “I am the Lord your God, and I want you to go and lead the people of Israel out of Egypt. They have been slaves down there long enough.” Moses protested and gave all his excuses, but God said to him, “Moses, I have chosen you. I will be with you” (Cf. Exodus 3:7-12). So Moses went, and through a series of circumstances he led the Israelites out of bondage. He became the greatest figure in the Old Testament and one of the greatest in world history.
The Only Person
It was God working through one. One man or woman believing in God, trusting in God, and taking the responsibility God had laid on their shoulders.
If you come to Christ today, you may be the only believer in your family. You’ll have to stand alone. You’ll have to go back to that same school or that same crowd tomorrow. There will be some things you no longer do, and people will laugh and sneer and make fun of you. You’ll have to stand alone. Are you willing to do that? But you won’t be alone. God will be with you. “I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:20, NIV), said Jesus.
Are you ready? Have you grasped the truth that one person committed to Jesus Christ is important in the sight of God? In 1793, William Carey landed in India and launched the modern missionary movement. One man went to India with the Gospel of Christ. Today followers of Jesus in that land number in the millions.
Jesus not only died for all, He died for you, as if you were the only person He was dying for. As the Scripture says in Hebrews 2:9, He “tasted death for every man.” I believe that on the cross He was looking across 2,000 years and calling your name and my name. He died for you and me.
That means He knows us and is interested in us. He will enable us to live a whole new life that we never knew existed before—but we have to be willing to pay the price. What is the price? It is all-out commitment.
When we go all out for Jesus Christ, it does not mean that we suddenly become perfect. That is a mistake many Christians make. They think that from the moment they receive Christ they are to be perfect. That makes them critical of others, for when they look around they don’t see perfection. Some day we will be perfect, but you won’t find a perfect Christian anywhere in the world today.
God Is Interested in You!
When we come to Christ we begin reading the Bible and praying and having fellowship with other Christians, and we start to grow. Many times our growth will be so slow and so infinitesimal that after a while we become disgusted with ourselves. For the first two or three years after I came to Christ I had some terrible moments of discouragement and despondency—and does the devil like that! The moment we become discouraged, he shouts, “I’ve got him!”
Listen: If you are not all that you want to become immediately, don't give up. Two or three or five years later you can look back and say, “Well, actually I am growing.” It's a gradual process, like physical growth.
When I was in Bible school in Florida, I had a little hideout in the woods that nobody knew about. I would go there alone and spend two or three or four hours, and I’d have it out with the Lord on subject after subject and problem after problem. I would say, “Lord, I just lost my temper and told that guy off.” And the Lord would say, “You go back and make it right with that person.” So I would start all over again. Sometimes growth was rapid, sometimes it was slow, but always it was in the grace and knowledge of Christ.
What is God doing in your life right now? He aims to mold you into the image of Christ so you will love as He loves, have peace like His peace, have joy like His joy.
God is interested in you. Jesus told a story about a shepherd who had 100 sheep. One of them was missing, and the shepherd left the 99 and went after the one lost sheep. Are you the lost sheep? Perhaps you are the one this message was written for. You could be mightily used by God if you give your heart and life to Him. Why not repent of your sins, tell God you are willing to change your way of living and receive Jesus Christ by faith as Lord and Savior? Do it today!