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STay Focused on God

Web of Distraction

By Laura J. Bagby Sr. Producer

CBN.comOne evening I decided to take a half-hour jaunt around my work facilities and pray. First, I reasoned I really needed the exercise. And, second, I find that I am often more open to hearing God and staying focused on Him in prayer when I am engaged in outdoor physical activity. So, why not enjoy both benefits – physical and spiritual? I hopped into the car and drove to the CBN/Regent campus to enjoy a peaceful walk.

But not even 10 minutes later, the bugs started their night-time symphony and threatened to drown out my thoughts with their percussive vibrations. OK, bugs, do you have to be so loud? I muttered to myself,trying to re-focus my full attention on the Lord. I quickly got back into the groove and continued my pace.

Another couple of rounds circling the grounds and I ran headlong into the stickiest, biggest spider's web – fortunately, no spider. I was annoyed that I had to stop and detach the fine, silky threads from my hair and clothing. And I was once again stopped in my mental tracks, as well. Aw, man! I just got my hair done, I whined, having only come from my hairdresser about an hour and a half prior. This is gross and uncalled for!

In my spirit I was shaking my fists at the universe. No, I wasn’t cursing inside, just feeling extremely miffed, and once again struggling to keep my focus on the whole reason why I was out in God’s beautiful nature: to have intimacy with the Lord.

I was starting to feel discouraged, but I continued nonetheless. My fervor didn’t last long, however. The saturated air of the increasingly muggy evening was starting to take its toll as I began to feel more and more uncomfortable in my long pants and wished I had worn something cooler. Finally, after attracting not the second, but the third, stealth spider's web of the evening, I gave up.  That’s it: I’m out of here!

As I was recounting this tale to a coworker, I started to see that what I shrugged off as a funny story about my frustration was actually a lesson for us as believers. Isn’t it just like God to show up in the everyday to teach us something?

Distractions, the little things, the little yeast that can threaten to spoil the whole batch - we really have to make a concerted effort to stay focused at times like these. It is so easy to focus attention and energy on those things that interrupt us. Instead, we should know that these little aggravations are going to come at us. The intent is to throw us off track, but it doesn’t have to.

We have to decide how to handle those moments. Either we continue to swat madly at those sticking, clinging irritations, like I was doing, or we choose to keep on walking our walk in faith, setting our face and our faith like flint on the One who calls us to that place of intimacy, despite the mess we just walked into.

It’s a reminder for you and me to not let anything keep us from our time with God. Don’t let those times when you wanted to give God your full attention but couldn’t keep you from trying again – and again and again. Our relationship with God is too important to shelve because something really little has us all upset.

Sure, you can take a moment to remove the irritation, to regroup spiritually, but get back in there. Don’t get waylaid to the sidelines; stay in the race!

“…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us” (Hebrews 12:1b).

Comments? E-mail me.

How to Give Your Life to Christ:

1. Admit you are a sinner and need forgiveness.

2. Believe that Jesus Christ died for you on the Cross and rose from the grave.

3. Through prayer, confess that Jesus Christ is the only way to God and commit to live for Him for the rest of your life.

What to Pray:

Dear Lord Jesus,

I know that I am a sinner and need your forgiveness. I believe that You died on the cross for my sins and rose from the grave to give me life. I know You are the only way to God so now I want to quit disobeying You and start living for You. Please forgive me, change my life and show me how to know You. In Jesus' name. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer, please send us an e-mail to let us know. Or you can call our CBN Prayer Counseling Center at (800) 759-0700. We would love to talk with you and send you some resources to help you begin your walk with the Lord.

Laura J. BagbyLaura J. Bagby produces the Health and Finance channels. She writes inspirational, humor, singles, and health articles.


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