Week of January 22
Distraction or Determination
“. . . “I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and go down to you?” Nehemiah 6:3
Distraction from our divine assignments can come in many forms: There are the obvious circumstances, such as too much television, gaming or PC time. But what about mind games from our enemies, unnecessary family drama or pressing work deadlines that can actually be better prioritized?
God has a timeline and a purpose when He assigns us great exploits. And He expects us to stay on course until the mission is completed, because much is at stake. It’s not just about us.
Consider Nehemiah, who led the restoration of the Jerusalem wall. What if Nehemiah had decided to give priority to his enemies who threatened him and his project (Neh 6:3)? How would Jerusalem the workers have been affected?
Distractions that cause us to step out of sync with God throw off our timing, cause kinks and delays and, worse yet, affect multitudes around us, even generations to come. And they can attack in the simplest forms—little foxes—we either don’t expect and/or don’t recognize as a danger.
God illuminated this principle to me years ago on an airplane. I was working as a flight attendant, and our crew had been rerouted, which caused us to be rescheduled to deadhead (airline lingo for sitting in a passenger seat to reach a destination to actually work a flight) on a particular flight. The flight was full, so I had no other choice than to sit in my assigned middle seat.
Since I often pray, “God, order my steps. I surrender my agenda to You,” I had confidence that God had purposefully ordered my steps and that this reroute was not a mishap.
Soon into the flight, I noticed that the woman seated next to me was reading, Jesus Freaks. I sensed in my spirit that God had purposed a divine appointment with this woman.
After awhile, we struck up a conversation, and I shared with her that I also am a Christian. The woman confessed to me that she, too, had prayed at the outset of her trip, asking God to order her steps. She discovered that she, like me, had gotten rerouted. Once on our flight, she prayed that the Lord would bring the person who needed Him most to sit beside her.
That person was me, and this touched my heart deeply. We held hands and prayed together, asking the Lord what He wanted me to receive.
I began to ask this woman questions, and in the course of our conversation, the Lord revealed exactly what He wanted me to have. Unbeknownst to her, I had been privately praying about a particular issue in my family. I had asked God to lead me to the sources and resources that had the answers. On this day, He answered my prayer.
This woman knew of a specific resource that would give me the information I needed to deal with this family issue. The very moment she began to share this information with me, suddenly passenger noise erupted all around us.
The noise became so loud that this woman had to write down the information for me, because I could not hear her speak. This noise was a distraction.
The enemy will use anyone and anything he can to prevent us from getting where God wants us to be and from doing what God wants us to do, which is why we—through Christ—must be smarter than our worst adversary. He does this because he knows the end result will be a great threat to him.
This woman and I were determined to stay on course. As God would have it, I received the information and soon after dealt with the family issue. The end result was victory, because despite the enemy’s distraction, we pressed on.
Being where God wants us to be is important. I tell my ministry team, “You have to know where God has assigned you. If you’re. “over there” when God wants you “over here,” you are not where God wants you to be, and you have been distracted by the enemy. Repent, then get back on course.
In what areas are you being distracted? Are there any little foxes in your world? Are you determined to remain on course and press on and receive the prize?
Margaret D. Mitchell is the Founder of God's Love at Work, a marketplace outreach purposed to share God's greatest power source - the love of Christ.