Wednesday, June 1, 2022

Devotionals for the Heart: Focus

Focus Forward

A devotional by Patricia Russell

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, 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, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
–Hebrews 12:1-2 (NIV)

Have you ever watched a bumble bee in action? The bee sits on the flower deliberately, diligently and is completely focused on getting the pollen it needs from that flower.

Have you ever diligently planned your day out with your “To-Do List” carefully curated including timeframes to complete your tasks? For the longest while I did this, but I did it without factoring in interruptions. I made this list and went about attacking it, without turning off the phone, closing the door and staying out of my email every 10 minutes. There were interruptions which became distractions.

Can you relate to this? Do you get distracted easily? Interruptions have the goal of doing one thing and that is to take your focus off your goals and put it on something else. If I were to take a poll, I am convinced we would all have a story of how frustrating it is to get back on task after being distracted.

In the book of Hebrews, the writer asks the readers to use Jesus Christ’s life as a reference.

Despite the hostility from sinners, he endured. He stayed the course, knowing the task He came to earth to accomplish. He didn’t quit or give in. I will admit that it continues to be a daily struggle to maintain focus. However, by being aware, I’m able to put in parameters that help me to stay on task. As I deal with interruptions, the distractions keep on coming. The writer of Hebrews, very aware of what his readers (including me) were facing, reminds us that Jesus understood intimately what they were struggling with. This is what I love about Jesus. He dealt with the same pains we face. He has the authority to advise us on how to handle life.

Hebrews 12:2 is a Bible verse that I have kept front and center in my life because there have been so many times I’ve wanted to throw in the towel. I’ve been discouraged because I’m not meeting the targets. But when I look at Jesus Christ’s example of how He stayed focused while carrying out His mission on this Earth to complete the plan of salvation to save our souls, I’m encouraged.

We see Jesus literally stepping away from the crowds and going into hills to be alone. He rose early in the morning, before everyone around Him saw daylight because this was prime time for him to connect with His Father (God) in Heaven. On another occasion, Jesus received communication from his dear friends Mary and Martha, requesting He come quickly because their brother Lazarus was dying. Yet, He did not come when they needed Him. His response was “No” at the time they wanted and needed him. As a result of his choices, he was misunderstood and criticized but his priorities were in order.

Are you focused?

What are you and I allowing to distract us from the tasks that we know God has called us to attend to?

It’s time to name these distractions, confess and repent of not being about our Heavenly Father’s business. It’s time to shake off what hinders us, take a deep breath and get back on course. We can do it. God has not left us or given up on us. Get back in the race and get on track! God has given us The Holy Spirit to enable us to complete the work He’s called us to do. He has also put people in our lives to keep us accountable. So don’t give up and don’t give in!

Get back up and keep it moving.

Let’s do as the Bible verse says, “throw off everything that hinders…”, and stay focused.

Let’s Pray: Heavenly Father, thank You for the example of Jesus who showed us about how to keep our eyes on You. Help us to put aside the distractions that delay us from completing tasks and doing what You’ve called us to do. Thank You for the comfort of The Holy Spirit and the encouragement of Your Word. In Jesus’s Name I pray. Amen.

Note from Alexis: Patricia’s devotional message today reminds me of the song “Eyes On the Prize” by Sara Groves. Listen to it here.

Author Bio:

Patricia is an encourager. She passionately uses her gifting as an author, speaker, pastor, recording artist, worship leader and coach.

Stronger Resilience: Stories to Empower the Mind, Body & Spirit (a book that she wrote) was an Amazon Bestseller in October 2020.

Patricia sings! She has released two CDs titled Draw Me Nearer and Lord I Trust You.

She also travels to speak to audiences internationally.

When she is not ministering to save souls in God’s Kingdom, Patricia enjoys reading, writing and connecting like-minded people who can sharpen each other in the journey to their dreams and goals.

As a two-time breast cancer overcomer, her desire is to coach others to live life to the fullest by understanding their gifting from God and using it.

Connect with Patricia:

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.