Has anyone heard of a man named Dawson Trotman? Most of you would say, “no”. An unfamiliar name. Certainly not a popular one. But one of the most profound names I know. Do you know who Billy Graham is? Now THAT’s a familiar name! Well, when Billy Graham was a young, up and coming evangelist, in the early 1950s, he pleaded with Dawson Trotman to help him follow up on the thousands who were committing their lives to Christ at his crusades. Dawson partnered with Billy to help develop discipleship materials and train disciplers. Daws and Graham became close friends in the process, and Graham preached at Daws’ funeral in 1956. And you know how Dawson died? He drowned trying to save a young girl’s life.
Simon of Cyrene. We don’t know anything about him. Pretty unfamiliar to most. Certainly not popular. But privileged to carry the very cross that brought us salvation and freedom from the penalty of our sin.
KINGDOM LIVING IS NOT ABOUT MAKING YOUR NAME GREAT, BUT HIS NAME GREAT!
Scripture says that they identified Jesus by nailing this above His head on the cross, “This is Jesus, The King of the Jews“. They made fun, hurled insults, and it even says that the two robbers that were crucified on the left and the right of Him also heaped insults on Him.
Insults hurt. They pile shame on you and cause you to question your identity. It’s not that people don’t know who you are but rather they know you by name only, and choose to assume and create their own assessment of you. Do you know where insults come from? Insults come from ignorance. When people insult another, it is because they don’t have a clear understanding of the person. If time were taken to get to know the person, the insult would more than likely turn to compassion, understanding, or even respect. Insults come from ignorance. Encouragement comes from engaging.
KINGDOM LIVING DOES NOT JUDGE THE NAME,
BUT GETS TO KNOW THE PERSON BEHIND THE NAME!
The sky is dark, the earth shakes and the rocks split, as Jesus takes His last breath. The centurions witnessed all that has happened and exclaimed, “Surely He was the Son of God!” Suddenly, the once blind now see Jesus for who He really is. Jesus had impacted those around Him by the way He lived. They discovered Jesus truly was God’s Son. Ignorance is not bliss. Ignorance is dangerous.
Today, my friend, not many may know your name. Some may know you by name only, and have made their own inaccurate assessment, and therefore judgement, of you. Make no mistake about it: when you start focusing on making God’s name great, others will discover who you really are.
Dawson Trotman made a huge impact on my life and I never met him. But I read about his life, and his heart to see men and women walk with God, and the respect I have for this man is enormous. I climbed a mountain in Colorado to visit his grave, and there, I asked the Lord to give me the spirit of Dawson Trotman. Out of his life, I was stirred to write the Living Deeper Series of discipleship for women; and he wasn’t well known, and may have been misunderstood, but his selfless, humble life has certainly impacted mine.
Who Will You Impact By The Way You Live Your Life?