I have mentioned before how I like to stick to a predetermined schedule as I carry out the various responsibilities I have as my wife’s caregiver. In some respects it is like being two people at once. For I not only have my own personal needs to take care of but those of my wife as well. So I guess you could say that I do just about everything - times two! With that in mind, I discovered early on that it works best to follow a set routine throughout the day. This has become even more important with the purchase of our new home.
So, added to my duties for Piper are the necessary maintenance and upkeep items along with the pursuit of the various hobbies that the house affords me to indulge myself in! I found that if I stick to my daily schedule with the necessary responsibilities of life, that I have the time to build things around the house, develop the yard and garden amenities and then sit back at the end of the day for a moment or two and enjoy the fruit of my labors.
Over the last few weeks though, I noticed a tinge of confusion entering in to the picture! And it was just little things that seemed to be upsetting the apple cart. Without thinking I would find myself doing things out of order, or mixing up things like the juice or yogurt that I normally add to some of Piper’s daily meds, or not being able to recall if I had done a certain task for her or not. One time I actually missed her mouth when using a medicine syringe to give her some food and sprayed it across her chin and the couch! (That one was actually a bit funny as she gave me the weirdest look!)
It wasn’t happening a lot… but it WAS happening… and it made me angry! I found myself binding the spirit of confusion and asking the Lord what was going on. (See Matthew 18:18) Then one day I heard the word “Distraction” coming from my heart and I began to concentrate on what it might be that was distracting me… and why?
The sudden and unexpected passing of our dog really seemed to bring the confusion and distractions up a notch or two and I still didn’t have any specifics on the whys. A few days after the tough event, everything seemed to come to a head. My wife and I went to town to do some major grocery shopping at our local Super Walmart. Everything was going rather smoothly and I was feeling quite lighthearted until we got in line at the cashiers and I noticed that I had forgotten to bring my wallet! At that moment I was filled with all kinds of emotions from panic, to confusion, and to anger at being so forgetful!
So after experiencing all of that, I finally asked the Lord for wisdom and noticed a front end supervisor we had talked to before. She was manning a register and called us over to her station. With a bright red face I told her our predicament and she just waved us on to her side. Then she told me that she would take our loaded cart to customer service and that they would hold it for us until we went home, got the wallet and returned. I am thankful for the ride in the country on the way home and back as we live a couple of miles out of town. The serenity of the countryside brought some peace back to me and by the time we returned to the store I had my lighthearted demeanor return!
It is a little funny now as I look back at that incident as things actually got worse when we got home and had another event later in the day that I ended up fighting in my mind and prayers throughout the night. By morning I had resolved that distraction and began to see how easy it is to let the “THINGS and CONCERNS” of this life get in the way of our faith in God, His Word and His plan for our lives.
I was reading how Philippians chapter three is a sort of bibliography of Paul’s spiritual life. What I noticed was that he was a focused man and did not let the distractions of the “THINGS” on earth take his view off from God’s point of view. And as a result, he was not upset or confused by things behind him, around him or before him. He did NOT allow “THINGS” to rob him of his joy!
In Philippians 3:13 Paul tells us that the winners of the Christian race that each of us are running, are those who concentrate, who keep their eyes on the goal and let nothing distract them. In I Corinthians 7:35 Paul reiterates this truth by declaring that “I am showing you how to live a noble life of devotion to the Lord without being distracted by other things.” (God’s Word ©)
One of the many lessons I have recently come to understand for myself these last few weeks is that the forgetfulness, confusion over the little things, the passing of our family pet and the unearthing of things of the past have all been used as ploys of the enemy of our faith to distract me from my faith and focus on our good future that Papa God has repeatedly shown me through the truth of His Word.
Yes, I have to deal with those things… but not for long periods of time. They are covered by the blood of the Lamb Jesus Christ and I just need to put them back where they belong and refocus my attention to my future which flows from my faith in God’s Word concerning my current situation and will soon be a part of my triumphant past.
So I am also beginning to see that distractions are not necessarily a bad thing as they demonstrate to me that I am on the right path - enough so, that someone is not real happy about my progress in the things of God and is trying his best to knock me off course!
Have a great day. Stay focused on the things of God and don’t allow distractions to distract you away from His point of view. And as you do, keep asking yourself… “Who am I expecting to NOT be distracted from today?”