Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, whom we acknowledge as our apostle and high priest. Hebrews 3:1 NIV
Getting Out of Focus
Each year, I travel to a conference, and although I attend sessions to learn, one of the joys is re-connecting with people who live in different areas. We’ll have meals together, chat in the lobby, and of course, take pictures. Phones make it convenient to take photos. Even better is being able to look at the photo immediately to see if it’s a keeper. So, one of us checks the photo to see who has her eyes closed, who’s looking away from the camera, or who moved so the photo is out of focus. Hopefully, there is at least one photo to save, send to the group, and worthy of a social media post.
Out of focus photos sometimes happen because people were not looking at the right place at the right moment. Being out of focus is also not unusual in life. One conversation with a friend at lunch last week included the topic of stress. “I never heard my parents talk about stress,” she said, “yet it’s a common term today.”
I agreed. They may have had stress, but persevered and focused on what they had to do and determined to leave less pressing things for another time. Not so today; we focus on our stress and distractions. We talk about our stress, whether in self-talk or with others and become more stressed and negative when we do. We may imagine “what if” when the scenario is probably not on the radar.
How To Focus on God
Life is blurry when we don’t focus on God.
In Hebrews 3:1 (NIV) we are encouraged to “fix our thoughts on Jesus.” Like looking in the right direction for a group photo, so we have a clear picture, turning my eyes and thoughts to Jesus will lead me to confidence He will lead me in the right direction (Proverbs 3:5-6) when I ask.
Later, scripture reminds again to focus on God, not on our stress, imagination of the negative, or on our frantic “To Do” list. Rather, to “fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2 NASB) What better place to focus than on the One who died for me and sits next to the throne of God as my advocate? (1 John 2:1 NIV)
Each of us has necessary tasks to complete each day, and important activities to attend. We have things we’d like to do for relaxation and leisure is important to refresh and refuel. Maybe we enjoy a hobby that takes time. Yes, there is a lot to do. The bottom line is, we face choices. What should we do and what can we put aside? By focusing my eyes and thoughts on Jesus, I will know what’s on His list and when to do it. When life gets blurry and I’m not sure what to do or where to go next, I can focus on God. He is trustworthy to direct my steps and give me clear vision.
If this devotion has blessed you, would you please consider sharing it or leaving a comment below?
Marilyn Nutter writes for magazines, on-line sites, and compilations. A speaker and a grief support facilitator, she serves on the women’s ministry team at her church.