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Refocus: Attention Adjustment

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Where are you looking?

If you’re reading this right now, I would assume you are looking at your computer, tablet or phone. But I mean in general, what has your attention?

What gets our attention determines our direction and, ultimately, our destination. Or if you would prefer the short version: attention determines direction. -Andy Stanley

I hate to break it to you but likely where we end up in life 20, 30, or 40+ years from now depends on what has our attention right NOW.

Want to be a good parent? A good spouse, friend, worker? Then we need to keep our eyes on the road.

You know how when we’re driving and all of a sudden we notice a car wreck off the side of the road and we can’t help but look over and before we know it we’re rubbernecking trying to see what’s going on only to look back at the road in front of us and see that we’re starting to veer into the next lane? Yeah, life is like that only with our time and our relationships.

We start off heading down the right direction with good intentions of living out our priorities but then. . .

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  • We need to get caught up on the latest episode(s) of our favorite show
  • We need to read every single article we can find on the Ebola virus (just to be safe)
  • We need to volunteer for every single activity we are asked (because they all really need our help)
  • We need to hide work in the garage because there are just SO many projects to do
  • We need to check our email 500 times a day (just in case of course)

Where we look determines the direction we go down.

The thing is it feels good to be entertained. We get bored, we need to numb, “real life” can be so overwhelming at times, we need some kind of escape.

I get it. I really do. But here’s the thing, distractions are all about our “feelings” what we feel or what we’re trying to avoid feeling but giving our attention to the best things required intentionality.

That child, spouse, friend, parent, loved one who really needs your attention isn’t going to wait forever. If they can’t get it from you they may start to look elsewhere and we may loose our opportunity.

Living with intentionality does with a cost, because when we “pay” attention to one thing we are not able to give that same attention to another so let us not spend our lives “paying attention” to worthless pursuits. We can’t get that time back.

The decisions we make today about what gets our attention will determine the direction our lives take.

A life reset may be the right time to readjust our focus away from distractions and “noise of life” and back onto our values, priorities and purpose; our MOST importants.

Today let’s consider:

An honest look at what has our attention?

Are those things our best things?

Is there someone or something in our lives that is desperate for our attention that we have neglected?

Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word. Psalm 119:37

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11 Comments

  1. Oh, I needed this today! YES! I let the wrong things get my attention (things like my stats on my blog). I need to focus my attention on being a better wife, teacher, mother, writer and child of God. Thank you for the reminder!

  2. Are you reading The Best Yes by Lysa TerKeurst at the moment?! I am working through so many of the thoughts you shared today and have been praying over being more intentional with my time ~ and direction 🙂
    Thank you for sharing such awesome encouragement!

    1. I thought of The Best Yes, too, Sarah! So many things I’m reading since I started the study have led me to being intentional… deliberate… prayerful. Loved this post.

  3. Loved this post, especially your comment about not letting things that weren’t worthwhile distract us from things that are worthwhile. I need that reminder.

  4. I will be copying down that psalm into my prayer journal. I too needed to read this today – it’s so easy to live in a state of distraction. I am going to make more of an effort, to focus on things that are not ultimately worthless.

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