People Who Command Attention – By Their Words

In this series we are going to consider a very topical and important subject that relates to everyone in this world. We live in a celebrity obsessed global village, where individuals are willing to go to great lengths to be noticed, acknowledged, appreciated, celebrated, or hero- worshiped.

As we look at our media-fueled, internet-driven, highly connected and over-communicated world, what we see is a mass scramble by narcissists of all shades, shapes and descriptions involved in a Gardarene rush for fame. For such individuals, any form of media exposure or visibility will do.

There is of course a very fine line between fame and notoriety. Notoriety is being known for the wrong reasons, whilst fame is being known for the right reasons. Many just want to be famous for being famous, regardless of any meaningful achievement or accomplishment. It is one of the fascinating features of our age that people are looking to gain the attention of others, through whatever means, by the things they say and what they do.

In this first article we shall be focusing on one individual who commanded attention through the words he spoke. I am sure you can think of many famous speakers and speeches. In that list would doubtless be the likes of Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Ghandi, Nelson Mandela, and Winston Churchill, and of course Dr Martin Luther King Junior and his famous ‘I Have a Dream,’ speech.

Standing head and shoulders above all of them is Jesus Christ. In the gospels (Mathew 7:29 and Mark 1:22), it was said of Jesus, ‘He spoke as one who had authority, and not as the teachers of religious law or the scribes.’ What is evident is that the people of the day saw that there was something unique about Jesus. The thing that was so distinctive about Him wasn’t just the content of what He taught, but the power authority that underscored His words and the impact of what He said. That made Him different. It made Him stand-out when compared to the other teachers of His day and this continues to endure. Jesus’ words are transformational.

The implication is clear: if you want to command attention, there has to be a sense of power and authority to what you say. It has to make a real and lasting difference in people’s lives.

How we need men and women today who will speak with moral and spiritual authority about the key issues that confront us in our world, and as they do, lives will be changed as a result. Those who command attention do so because of the content of their teaching, the power that is inherent in their words and the enduring legacy of lives changed through their words.

Copyright Emmanuel Mbakwe 2013©

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