Monday, July 8, 2013

Shifting Focus

Psalm 121

121 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.
My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.
He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber.
Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand.
The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.
The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.
The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

Shifting Focus

There is a tenet about the Christian walk that is true whether we met Jesus for the first time yesterday or if we've been walking in 'The Way' for decades...there is an enemy and it is his job to keep us distracted from our work in Christ. If he can't keep us from restoration, he wants to make sure that we are as ineffective as possible in our callings.  That's his job.  It's his only job and he's dedicated to it.

We can spend alot of energy battling the imps and demons that are put in our path.  What we have to realize is that engaging in the battle can be as destructive as the arrows and fiery darts he throws.  Truth is, regardless if the battle is something from the outside, or something from within, that's not our battle.  That's the Lord's.

Too often, we can get caught up on the wrong side of wanting to be righteous.  It is important to recognize that we have shortcomings in our walk in Christ and that we will live down to those shortcomings from time to time.  But as tempting as it is to wallow in the self pity that often follows one of those experiences, we have to resist and focus back on Christ.  I know if feels like humility, but more times than not its just plain old guilt that we're really feeling.  And guilt can be just as distracting as an unplanned attack.

Regardless the circumstance, we need to focus on Christ.  Not our own abilities, or inabilities...not our situation...not even the facts of the matter.  We need to focus on truth and the truth of God.  This is how we resist the enemy and this is how we transform by renewing our mind.  It isn't always easy, but it is always fruitful.

When the disciples saw Jesus walking on the water, Peter asked if he could come out.  Jesus told him to come and Peter stepped out of the boat on to the water.  The storm didn't change.  The water didn't change.  But Peter was focused on the Master and was overcoming the 'facts' that were all around him.  When he took his eyes off Jesus and looked at the 'facts', Peter changed.  He stopped overcoming and became overcome.

Bills, children, parents, jobs, sicknesses, bad habits, co-workers; there are many different things in our daily lives that can give us a whole litany of facts that should set our heads spinning.  The truth however is calming and will keep us at perfect peace.

I'm not suggesting that we ignore what's going on.  Only that in the midst of it all, focus on Christ.  That's where the peace is.  That's the answer to the question. He is the path away from what's destructive in our lives and the path to provision.

Let the fire rage.  Keep your eyes, your mind, your focus on Christ.  He'll either squelch it, lead you out of it, or join you in it.  Regardless, it will not consume you as long as you let Him consume you first.

Matthew 14:25-31

25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea.
26 And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear.
27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.
28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?

Philippians 4:8

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.


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Fellowship Church
Where Passions Become Reality
Because You Are a Chosen Generation

455 Hwy 138 W. Suite C
Jonesboro, GA 30238
Between GA Hwy 85 and US 19/41
Across from EJ Swint Elementary School