Focus

Maybe it’s because we’ve been so focused on songs and lyrics the past couple of weeks (which reminds me, if you missed voting for your top 5 of this past week’s picks, check out yesterday’s thread and cast your vote!) But today’s devotional for me has a lot of different lyrics running through my head as I ponder the things on my heart and mind this week.

I want to just reiterate before the main devotional, that the things I write for devotionals here are based on things I’ve either gone through or struggle with, and meant as a help or conversation starter for others who have gone through or still experience similar things, and to help encourage others through their own struggles and issues. A lot of what I say here is something some of our regular Heart Beaters already know or are farther along in their own walks of faith- So if it seems pretty elementary sometimes, that’s why.

Sometimes it’s hard to be in the world while not being of the world and put our focus on where it belongs- namely on Jesus.  Sometimes when the sea billows continue to roll in our every day lives, it’s hard to keep our eyes on the Lord to keep us from going under.

In the midst of depression, the daily grind or just being in a place or season we don’t want to be in, or want desperately to move on from, we are focused so much on our immediate problems (feeling sorry for ourselves is soooo danged easy to fall into) that we are seeing only one or two pieces of a puzzle. We’re so focused on trying to make the pieces fit and in our hard headed stubbornness, we don’t realize the more we try and jam them together, the more it’s going to hurt and circumstances will still stay the same.

Last week I mentioned lines. There are so many lines, often it’s the thin ones we have a hard time balancing on, or we’re not sure which side we’re supposed to fall on.  One of those lines is trying to maintain a balance of trusting God, while being reminded of the world’s ideas of success or failure, and also having faith that God will bless us while remembering that not all blessings come in ways we want or need. So often blessings come in disguise, and while we bemoan things happening in the minute, we’re not seeing that puzzle from God’s Perfectly finished perspective, but on those couple of non fitting, uncomfortable pieces.

There comes times when we’re overwhelmed by life, when even simple things that other people tend to take for granted seem so impossible for us. These are the times which try our souls, and where we need to remember where we should have our focus. Yes, it’s a daily struggle, and yes it’s easy to wallow in the woe is me attitude- but as I’ve been learning more and more over the past few years, it’s those times when my flesh wants to wallow, my spirit says, ENOUGH already and I have to force myself to focus on what the Spirit is saying.

The balance is to have that mustard seed sized faith, but to also realize that while we might not want to be where we are, and we might want things different, God might have other ideas for us, so that Even If… He says no or not now, we know that the puzzle He’s built has us right where He planned for us to be.

A relationship with the Maker of the stars, Who created us because He loves us.  He died for us- and wants what is good and perfect for us.  And anything that draws us closer to Him, anything that causes us to help others through similar circumstances by showing them Christ… that’s the focus we need to have.  It’s not about us, it’s all about Him.

Lord, Please calm the storms of doubt, depression, anxieties and fear. Lift our spirits and help us to continue to focus on You instead of our immediate circumstances. Help us to remember and believe that You can do great things and bless us in ways we would like, but to accept that You in Your wisdom might have other ways for us. Thank You Jesus for loving us even when we’re confused, hurt and selfishly focused on ourselves. Amen.

Have a blessed Monday everyone.