Thursday, July 22, 2010

Time To Focus

Imagine one day your driving on a highway, minding your own business, admiring the beautiful sky in front of you. You're keeping up with traffic and then, out of the corner of your eye, you see a big, naked, ugly, hairy man running on the side of the road giving everyone the thumbs up. You can't take your eyes off this crazy guy and in the process your car veers into the next lane and you get into an accident with someone who was so shocked by the big hairy guy that she didn't know what to do either.

Sin is the big, hairy, ugly, naked guy. We have a tendency to focus more on the sin in our lives than on God, the Giver of love and life. What happens when we shift our focus?

We crash.

We were not created to be flawed creatures. We were called by God to greatness. We spend too much of our time focusing on how vile human beings are. We need to shift that focus. I'm not saying to ignore sin, but when you focus on something you become that thing. If I focus my mind on the idea that I am a loser, I will become a loser. If I focus on becoming a great student, I will become a great student.

Here's another great example:

In 1843, Nathaniel Hawthorne, the author of The Scarlet Letter, published a short story called "The Birthmark". At the center of this tale is a beautiful young woman with a tiny hand-shaped birthmark on her face. She is the talk of the town, praised for her beauty and desired by many.

There is one young man, a scientist, who falls for the gorgeous young woman, courts her, and eventually marries her. After their wedding, the young man becomes obsessed with his wife's birthmark and as the days wear on he begins to see her as ugly, a perfect being marred by this hideous defect. Soon the young woman buys into her husband's opinion and considers herself an abomination.

The young scientist decides he can create a way to get rid of the mark and make this near-perfect creature perfect. He gives her a potion to drink. She drinks and the mark fades. The young man has gained what he has always wanted perfection.

Minutes later his wife dies and his moment of perfection, the love of his life, is lost forever.

Each of us has a birthmark. This mark is very real and can be very dangerous, but over the last two thousand years the focus has been less on the beauty of the creation and more on the defect.

What we have done to ourselves is like a person who owns a beautiful diamond but focuses only on the tiny scratch deep within. There are few perfect diamonds in the world. Each has a flaw. We have spent the whole of human history focusing not on the radiance of the diamond, but obsessing on the blemish. Instead of focusing on love and forgiveness, we've nursed anger and hatred.

God created us to be greater than the angels! Greater than the angels!! We slipped and fell and scratched ourselves. The cut, the bleeding, however does not change our original nature. Instead the enemy had shifted our focus ever so slightly away from the forgiving beauty of God to depravity. If we become what we focus on, then we as human beings have become everything we were never intended to be.

Isn't it time to change our focus and see ourselves like God does? Isn't it time to focus on the beauty of the diamond instead of the small scratch, no one sees it but us. Let's change our focus.

Join me in the 30 day challenge to add 15 minutes of prayer, praise, meditation and worship to our day and see what life changes will happen. Simply leave a comment and let me know that you completed your 15 minutes today, and then update us if anything amazing happened in your day. Perhaps it was a sense of peace you had, or overwhelming joy despite what was going on. Share with us every day and let it inspire others to join in. I can't wait to hear your comments. ~ Kat


He & Me + 3 said...

Amen...I wish I could see myself like He does. I too pray I see others like Him and have a compassion for them.

Clif said...

I just sent your mailing information to the publisher for a copy of Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh. I hope you find something helpful in this book.

David C Brown said...

Isn't the need to see ourselves "in Christ"? "If anyone be in Christ there is a new creation ...".

The "old man" is hopeless, the "new man" of the character of Christ.

KrippledWarrior said...

Well stated sister.
School was in session. Learning took place, today. Thank you.

Mari said...

Another great post with so much wisdom! Thanks for the post and for starting the 15 minutes daily.

LV said...

As always you never cease to find wonderful words and thoughts to inspire us each day. We just need to follow your suggestions more.

Denise said...

Such a powerful lesson taught here sis, bless you.

Just Be Real said...

Certainly can learn something from this one Kat. Thank you. Blessings.

Goose Hill Farm said...

Wow! That certainly does put things in perspective, huh?

Great post, my friend!


Rita said...

If we keep our eyes on Him, we can never stray. It's when we lose focus that we are in trouble. Have a great weekend.

renewd42 said...

Amen, to be more like him! wow I'd never heard this story! Its amazing and very thot provoking! thanks for sharing! Hopefully we do indeed focus on what really matters. blessings!! :) hugs!