So far, this year is a fail. Let me tell you why.
- Writing at least 5 times per week? – Try this is the first time since January 1. Doing the math on that I am only about, well, 10 days behind. Need to work on that.
- Reading my Bible every day? – Well, better on this one. There has been at least a few minute look into it every day, but I have not been the scholar that I have set out to be this year thus far.
- My health? – Well, we all get that holiday bulge, right? I haven’t gained a lot, but I need to get that focus back if I am going to make positive change with a declining poundage!
- Me as an employee? – Depends in what you are looking at. I have been VERY busy, but it has all been in handling the urgent things that have been coming up. Most of the important work I feel I need to get done has been pushed aside. I’m busy, and people are happy, but this is building in the background…
So, yeah. Not where I wanted to see myself 11 days into the year. The thing to remember is that I have 355 days left in 2016 to turn it around! (Thank you, Leap Year!) There is no reason to let it get me down. It’s just a reminder to keep the focus where it belongs.
Where does it belong though? If I’m just focusing on these things, it will get very easy to be busy doing these good things, but in the end I could miss out on the best thing – seeing God at work in them.
The Bible is so great in how it tells us where we need to keep our focus in the midst of the hustle and bustle of life. Solomon tells us about amazing, wonderful things that he was able to experience, and in the end it was like chasing the wind. The Proverbs repeat over an over how important it is to keep a wise focus in our actions. David tells us in the Psalms that in the middle of war, turmoil and family squabbles, all He really needed was God in His life. Paul tells us that he doesn’t want to live his life in a way that is like just batting at the air.
All the things that we get busy with are not bad things unless they are pulling our focus from God. Yesterday our Pastor talked about the importance of abiding in God. Abiding in Him is what we are called to do. The thing is, we get hung up on all the stuff that we are doing that are good things that will bear fruit, but the truth is that NOTHING WE DO will ever bear fruit. That comes from God. He is the vine that brings life to the branch and in the life is the fruit. Apart from Him we can never bear fruit.
We can live busy lives, but if we are not RELENTLESS about living in a way that keeps our focus on Him in our business, we are wasting time, energy, and maybe even our witness. Ouch. None of us wan that, so what can you do?
Take time at the end of the day today and think about the things that kept you busy. Ask yourself if God ever came to mind in those moments. If He didn’t, maybe it would be a good thing to ask Him for a bit of forgiveness for shutting Him out or at the very least ignoring Him. Then, take note of those moments and make a commitment to take control of that moment the next time and give it to Him. Ask Him in that moment what He is trying to teach, what the eternal value of the action is, how your action or attitude might be modified to bring glory to Him in it. Maybe you just need to ask if you should be doing it at all!
The new year is always going to bring fresh fails, but a RELENTLESS year is going to take those failures and use them to grow closer to God. Even in the crazy times!