An Undivided Heart
By Tiffany Thibault
Teach me your way, Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. - Psalm 86:11
One of the hardest things I have had to help my children work through is distractions. They are easily distracted while doing their schoolwork, their chores, and even in their conversations. They start out doing a task very focused, but then something happens to pull their mind away. The dog barking, a phone call, the dream they remembered from last night, that they have to tell me about right now before they forget (even though they were supposed to be taking a math test).
The interesting thing is that when they are watching one of their TV shows, or YouTube videos, their attention is focused. It is extremely hard to pull their gaze off the screen. When I do get their attention, they usually forget what I had told them later on. They sometimes have no recollection of what goes on around them or any idea of passing time, while focused on their show.
It all comes down to what they love. History book, versus an interesting novel. Two completely different attention spans. Two completely different results.
Our Bible verse today is a written prayer to the Lord for undivided attention. The author knew how hard it is to stay focused on what really matters, knowing the Lord. Just as my children are easily distracted while at work, I am as well while spending time in the Word or at prayer. My mind quickly wanders from the most important task at hand, being with Jesus.
It gives me encouragement to read these words written long ago. I know that I cannot have an undivided heart for the Lord without His help. I need Him to teach me how to stay focused on Him. The Bible verse makes it very clear that we cannot rely on His faithfulness, fear His name or have an undivided heart if we are not open to the Lord teaching us His way.
I have been teaching my children to set a timer, to remove distractions, and to intentionally work at staying focused while doing their schoolwork or chores. They have steadily gained progress as they have applied themselves to being focused.
How undivided is your heart for the Lord? Are you faithful in the Word and in prayer? Just as the writer of our verse wrote thousands of years ago, this struggle is not new, but I think the struggle is even harder today. Our lives are so incredibly busy and packed with activities, deadlines, and distractions, that if we even get to a quiet time, it's often a rushed moment, a thing to check off.
So, the writer of our verse knew that the secret to having an undivided heart is desire. He pleaded with the Lord to help him with this area because it was just too hard to do it all by himself. Do you eagerly read the Word to learn from the Lord? Or has it become just another to-do item? Or perhaps it has even slid to the “do it later” pile?
Now is the day, now is the moment to make that decision about your heart. Is it divided or undivided? Are you okay with the answer to that question?
If you are serious about wanting to know the Lord more, about allowing him to teach you what an undivided heart means, will you ask him? Will you join me in refocusing your mind and your schedule on the Lord? Will you join me in being intentional about really growing closer to Him?
Look around you today. Everywhere you look, people are on their phones, barely taking their eyes off it as they walk or work. Every time you look at your phone, think of the Lord, say a prayer. Every time you open an email on your phone, also open the Bible app and ask the Lord to teach you something from the verse you read.
Just as I will wait today for my children to finish their schoolwork so that I can grade it, the Lord is waiting for us to talk with Him, to spend time in the Word learning all about Him. As a teacher, I don’t want to wait all day for them to finish. As for our heavenly Father, I know He wants to hear from you sooner than later. He loves you and has so many things He wants to share with you. Don’t put off until later the one thing that can make your life better. Time with Jesus, in His word and praying with Him will never be wasted time.
Tiffany Thibault enjoys living life with her husband, two daughters and one very large dog in Las Vegas. She not only homeschools her girls, but she also loves to write about Jesus and speak about Him to groups of women. She loves long walks, coffee and anything chocolate.
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