Tag Archive | focus

Look At Me

Galatians 1:10 – For am I now trying to win the favor of people, or God? Or am I striving to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a slave of Christ. (HCSB)

My husband began to pastor his first church when our son was just a few months old. I had a Bible, a covered casserole dish and determination to be the best Baptist preacher’s wife ever and therefore took on the title in full confidence. I was unaware a lack of piano skills trumped covered casserole dish and quite possibly Bible. One particular female member was abundantly gifted with keen sight for my shortcomings. Apparently Mark 16:15 (And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation) was her life verse, but she stopped reading after the word “proclaim”. Thankfully, her proclamations only extended into her local world. Pointing out my many lapses and disappointments was her cross to bear and she bore it gladly. As If her actions didn’t make me frenzied enough, her favorite beginning to any conversation with me was, “Well, the LAST preacher’s wife” and I would be made aware of the paragon of sainthood who had preciously occupied my seat. James 1:2-4 says to consider it an opportunity for great joy when troubles come your way, but joy is pushed away when we are working to fit someone else’s measurement. Church became stressful torture for me trying to keep our son quiet – no worship, lots of worry. Serving became a burden and a chore – not pleasing to God or me and definitely not pleasing to my strict supervisor. My focus was shifting to pleasing someone other than God and my peace was disappearing like dandelion dust. I wish I could say I have repented of my people pleasing ways, but when my focus begins to shift I remember the words to the old hymn “Turn your eyes upon Jesus and the things of earth will grow strangely dim”. Jesus said, “And the one who sees Me sees Him who sent Me.” (John 12:45 HCSB). I will change my way of looking at things by changing the things I’m looking at.

 

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Focus

Hebrews 12:2: Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (NIV)

Lord, I seem to be going in all directions this morning.  I pick up something in one room and take it to another confusionroom, where I see something that I need to do, which leads me to another room and another task.  I have made my own amusement park ride – going in all directions just to end up where I started.  I decide I need to sit down with my cup of reheated-again-coffee, take a breath, and focus.  Lord, I hear Your still, small voice reminding me that the way I live my life is sometimes like my time this morning.  I spend a lot of time going in all directions when I need to focus on You and the direction that you have for me.  Studies have shown that where our eyes go, our bodies will follow.  Runners are told to focus on a point ahead.  Professional drivers are told to focus on the road.  Christians are told to focus on You.  We all know what can happen when we lose focus.  Runners cross out of their lanes.  Drivers run off the road.  Christians become confused.  Matthew 14:29 tells us that Peter was walking on water when his focus was on You but sinking in the water when his focus changed.  Professional drivers have caused major traffic issues because their focus changed.  Well-trained runners have caused injuries to themselves and others when their focus changed. Christians have become mired in sin because their focus changed.  Lord, help me to keep my focus on You, to look to You on my life’s walk, to look to You when things seem to be racing by, to look to You when I am on top and when circumstances seem to be pulling me under.  Lord, help me to focus on You instead of the situation, to focus on Your healing instead of the pain, to focus on Your generosity instead of my wants.  Psalm 121:5 says that You watch over me. Thank You, Lord, for never losing Your focus.