by Kelly Wilson Mize
Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to thepaths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil. Proverbs 4:25-27 NIV
“What am I even looking for?” I sometimes find myself asking as I mindlessly, even frantically, scroll through my phone. It’s sad but true…many of us spend way too much time staring at worthless information on a screen.
Technology can be wonderful, and there is much worthwhile content to consume via the screen of an electronic device: valuable information, happy pictures of sweet puppies and kittens to brighten a dreary day, beautiful music to inspire, even the Word of God, sermons, and biblical study materials. These are all good things.
Among the good things for me is the weather app. It’s is a convenient tool that I consult daily. In the South, we have tornado threats throughout the year, so being weather-aware is important. Beyond that, I check the weather for less pressing reasons, like the forecast for my daily walk, or just so I’ll know how to dress for the upcoming day.
But more often than not, somewhere along the way to the weather app, I find myself distracted. Swipe, swipe, swipe—emails, texts, doom-and-gloom news stories, social media posts, book rankings, memes, videos—before I ever make it to the weather. Often, a whole lot of time passes before I realize I haven’t even seen the weather report at all!
Essentially, I get completely lost, focusing on things that distract me from my purpose.
I don’t know about you, but I often get distracted from my life’s purpose as well.
Ecclesiastes 12 :13 (NIV) says, “… Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.”
When Jesus was asked which commandment was the most important, He said, Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments (Matthew 22:36-40 NIV).
What kinds of things distract us from that fundamental purpose? What unhealthy detours cause us to get lost on the way to God’s most ideal destination for us?
Personally, I get lost when I don’t spend time in prayer and Bible study, when I compare myself to others, when I am selfish with my time, when I constantly worry and doubt God’s goodness, when I fail to act because of fear…the list goes on and on.
But there is a better way. When we are focused and deliberate in our walk with Christ, obedient to His Word, and consistently seeking His presence, we gain a spiritual wisdom and maturity that only our Creator can impart.
Honestly, as long as I have a cell phone, I’ll probably continue to get lost on the way to the weather app. But spiritually, it’s vital that I stay attentive to my life’s goal. When I am intentional about my destination, following the path that God has set before me in this life, the Bible says I will be blessed with an inheritance from the Lord (Colossians 3:23-24). As Solomon advises in Proverbs 4, may we allendeavor to keep moving, looking straight ahead without distraction toward the only thing, the only ONE who should be our prime focus—Jesus.
This article is brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).
About the author: Kelly Wilson Mize is a wife, mother of two young adults, and former educator with a master’s degree in education. In 20 years as a published author, she has composed numerous articles, interviews, curriculum projects, and devotions, and has contributed to eight traditionally published books. Credits include Lifeway, Bethany House, Guideposts, (in)courage, and others. Kelly’s first full-length publication, a picture book for all ages called The Beautiful Story Within Me is available now wherever books are sold!
Join the conversation: What kinds of things are most distracting to you?