Driven to Distraction

You know, I don’t pay attention to many car commercials, mostly because I can’t afford a new car. But I was watching television over the weekend and one caught my eye like none has in quite a while.

Perhaps you’ve seen it: they ask eight or so people to sit in a room and watch a video on a screen.  You hear a verbal command something to the effect, “Please do not remove your eyes from the screen.  Watch the screen at all times.”

Then the producers send in cute puppies, Vegas-style show girls, loud singers, and a host of other distractions.  And of course, not one participant keeps his/her eyes on the screen.

It’s a car commercial with a target audience for those that feel the need to text while driving.  The car they’re advertising has a text screen located high on the dashboard so that you can text and keep your eyes on the road. Sorry. This makes me nervous. PLEASE DON’T TEXT AND DRIVE — EVEN IF YOU OWN THIS CAR.

The fact that I can’t remember many of the details of this commercial says something. I have to say I wasn’t enthralled by the commercial enough to even remember the make or model of the car. From the moment the commercial started, I heard the still, small voice of God whispering in my ear, “That’s you, Sandy.  You’ve been distracted from Me.”  After that, all I could think of was the spiritual implications of how I’ve been distracted from God.

We must never stop looking to Jesus. He is the leader of our faith. and He is the One who makes our faith complete.He suffered death on the cross. But He accepted the shame of the cross as if it were nothing because of the joy He could see waiting for Him and now He is sitting at the right hand of God’s Throne.  Hebrews 2:12 ERV

I am a writer, so distractions can be the death of an afternoon of hard work or even an idea. But you don’t have to be a writer for distractions to wreak havoc on your life.

Imagine cleaning your house and happening upon some really interesting television show (Discovery ID can do this for me). You sit to watch a few minutes and the next thing you know it’s time to make supper and do homework with the kids — and that inch of dust is still layered on top of the mantel.

Just about the time you sit down for your quiet time in the Bible and a moment to commune with God, a friend with whom you’ve not spoken in ages calls…and it just seems rude to hang up. Before you know it, it’s been two hours and you now have to rush to get to your doctor’s appointment.

Or, let’s imagine that you are at the grocery store with your list — your concise, nothing-else-needed list; the list that you diligently went through the kitchen cabinets, refrigerator, and the freezer to make; the list you intend to stick to because you’ve promised God to live on a tighter budget and contribute a little extra to the “Imagine No Malaria” campaign at church.   As you turn the first aisle, you notice Nutter Butters are on sale (Or Oreos!) and you counsel with yourself saying, “Just one little bag won’t throw my budget off too much.”  And by the end of the grocery shopping, you’ve “one-little-bagged it” on every aisle and your budget is blown.

“We must never stop looking to Jesus,” is the first line in Hebrews 12:2.

And I fail to do it every day. If you think I’m writing to tell you how well I avoid distractions, my dear Child of God, you are reading the wrong devotion in the wrong blog. It takes great practice to ignore the pleadings of the world and while I’d like to say I spend a good portion of every day practicing avoiding distractions, I don’t spend nearly enough. I get caught up in the drama of the world and let the rush of “being in with the in-crowd” wash all over me.

The point I want to share with you is that God uses worldly things to remind me just how distracted I’ve let myself become. In my gluttony, He shows me a young couple who is barely making it on their own. In my gossip-carrying mouth, He allows me to see or hear a bit of unkindness about myself so that I can lay my hate-carrying tongue on His altar for cleansing. In my impatience, He allows me to experience waiting in a way that will only point me to Him. If I’m carrying a grudge or hate in my heart toward someone, He somehow shows me that I have the same quality I dislike about that person.  I must humble myself and forgive that person or there will be no forthcoming forgiveness from God to me.

In my distracted mind, God shows me a car commercial in which the message isn’t that I can text and watch the road at the same time, but that I can’t remain close to God and let a distraction take my attention away. I must remain focused on my Lord as if the distractions of this world are nothing or I will miss the joy that is waiting for me.

Do you have a something you’d like to share in the comments?  Do you need prayer?  If so, you can leave a detailed request or simply write “unspoken.”

Don’t miss the joy of the Lord, my friends! And whatever our distractions are, rest assured that God is never distracted from us.

If you don’t know about the wonderful missions project (Imagine No Malaria) by the United Methodist Church, please click on the link above, and if you feel so inclined, a donation would be greatly appreciated.

shr

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7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. writerwannabe763
    Apr 25, 2015 @ 10:10:43

    You’re right, It’s so easy to be distracted especially when we ‘intend’ to read God’s word. That’s for sure when something else seems to demand our attention…’Focusing’ more on God is I guess what the answer is… maybe to think of Jesus as someone knocking on our door, and answering it, because He is our guest after all…. Diane

    Reply

  2. Anne Sikes
    May 04, 2015 @ 23:54:50

    Hello again, and thank you so much for this blog! Oh, how much it spoke to me. I tried to like it, but am having trouble with the ‘like’ button. I seem to only be able to like things from the reader, and I didn’t come here from there. Hopefully it’ll sort itself out.

    In any case, my daughter Jennifer was just telling me that she was turning her phone off and going to leave it off all day tomorrow so she can devote some time to Jesus alone and without the normal and unending distractions. I need to find a time to do that myself. But for now, I just need to get back to a regular time of daily prayer and devotions.

    Reply

    • Sandra Hall Rosser
      Aug 26, 2015 @ 21:43:42

      Anne, I apologize that there was so much time between my last two posts. It was just a busy summer. But I have a goal to post 2-3 times a week.

      I will pray for you. And you pray for me.
      Thanks, Sandy

      Reply

  3. Renee
    May 31, 2015 @ 01:09:36

    I came upon your blog while researching Carb Cycling . I am so glad that I’ve found it. I too struggle with my weight . I have recently been diagnosed as pre-diabetic. God has been talking to me for YEARS about my lifestyle , eating and overall health. I feel that He is calling me to a fasted lifestyle . I am now ready to start my journey to wholeness and i will be leaning on the Lord for strength and guidance .

    Reply

    • Sandra Hall Rosser
      Aug 26, 2015 @ 21:40:13

      I gained my weight back because I had 2 unsuccessful surgeries in 2 years. Dealt with massive depression. But I’m back to my blog. I started carb-cycling again on Aug 17. (Down 3 pounds!) I’m glad you found me. I warn you – I fight the same demons you do. I have feet of clay! But I find comfort in numbers. We can cheer each other on. Prayer is my go-to on everything. I will pray for you, Renee.

      Reply

    • Sandra Hall Rosser
      Aug 26, 2015 @ 21:46:32

      I am there with you. I need to lose 40-45 pounds. I got depressed and gave up. But I have a new medicine and a renewed Spirit within me. Thanks, Sandy

      Reply

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