Have you ever had your bubble blown up, soaring high and hopeful, only to have it burst into tiny pieces right before your eyes? Have you ever pulled blankets to keep your upper body warm, only to discover that your feet were sticking out? I’m sure you get the idea. Obviously, like many of you, I’m well-acquainted with these types of scenarios. In the thick of it, it can be difficult to stay focused and centered on our faith and not life’s changing circumstances. However, if we are focused and armed with the full armor of God, we can prepare ourselves for the spiritual battle with distractions.
When we’re faced with problems and difficult situations, the worst thing we can do is to lose our focus. This past week has been an unusually difficult week in many respects. There have been some very big challenges and then not so big one, such as my son beating my new Mac pressed powder like a drum, covering his body and the floor with it. (I have to mention how he made the kitchen wall his art canvas and an orange and green crayon his paintbrush as well this week.) Anyway, I got caught up in the emotions of the negative situations and temporarily lost focus. I even attempted to pray, reading scriptures and devotions. However, it had little impact initially because my mind had locked onto the problems and its possible devastating consequences. I had caved to the pressure.
We have to make a deliberate choice not to waste any time resting our thoughts on the negatives, which only lead to anxiety, worry, and depression. Anything that distracts us from God’s Word and His will are dangerous because it inevitably leads to sin. As elementary as this is going to sound, I realized that I can’t have faith and worry. It’s just like the principle that says light and dark can’t occupy the same space. Hebrews 12:1 instructs us, “let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.” If we choose to focus on our faith, it can keep us from distraction. Every single care has to be given to Him so that we can accomplish what God has for us in its fullness.
Paul admonishes us in I Corinthians 7:35 to “attend upon the Lord without distraction.” In Matthew 6:33-34, Jesus says, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself.” Jesus has given us a divine order to the complexities of life. Priority one is for us to seek His kingdom and His righteousness. I have to admit that when I really meditated on these words, the worry and anxiety broke. When I’m obedient, the worry, fear and anxiety dissolve.
Problems and challenges have a way of revealing where we really are. We can panic, worry, and delve into a sea of despair, or we can put the problem or challenge where it rightfully belongs, at the feet of Jesus. Anytime I’m tempted to pick it back up, I have to remember to quickly let it go and refocus.
I am reminded of Jesus teaching about those who build their houses on rock and sand in Matthew 7:21-28. He explains that not everyone who gives prophesies, prays, and performs good works in His name will enter into the kingdom of heaven. Only those that hear and do what he says will be like the wise man who built his house on a rock. Remember, “the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.”
Is your house built on a rock? If not, consider surrendering all to Him. Storms will and do come, but there is safety. Cast all of your cares upon Him. He loves you and doesn’t want you weighted down by the pressures of life. He can fill your joy and every dark space. He can cover you under his blanket of unconditional love, protection, and provision. He did it for me, and I know He can do it for you.
I’d love to hear from you. Drop me a line on the Abiding in the Vine Facebook group page or comment at www.MaRitaTeague.blogspot.com