Focus, Focus, Focus!

“I lift my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.” (Psalm 121:1-2 CSB)


After a recent visit from my grand-daughters, I set about reorganizing, cleaning, and putting away random toys. I started to put my nativity back in its “proper” order when God nudged me. Let’s be real, God generally gives me more than a gentle nudge to get my attention.  Looking at my nativity through the eyes of a three-year-old gave me a completely different perspective.

I organize my nativity with Mary and Jesus gazing adoringly at the baby Jesus, front and center. The cow and donkey are discreetly behind them. The shepherds are outside the stable, on a “hill” complete with palm trees, the flutist, the bag-piper, and the drummer are a little closer. The three wise men approach from the right, a little further out, since they aren’t really there when Jesus is born. Obadiah sits on top of Alexa since he is smaller than my other sculptures (I’m pretty sure he wasn’t even alive when Jesus was born). All nice and tidy. Much like my attempts at organizing my life.

Ally put Jesus at the center and everyone surrounds him. Close. All eyes are on Jesus.

A three-year-old’s view of life. Simple. Just look at Jesus.

Put Him at the center of all you do. Jesus is the center of their adoration, their attention, and their lives.

As I move into the new year God keeps pulling my mind back to that view. Three weeks into 2019, how’s it going? Are you already regretting some of those goals you wrote down? Looking back at past years goals, I see a pattern. They are the same. Every year.

These have been my goals for several years now:

  1. Lose 30 pounds by February, March at the latest.
  2. Be a better wife and mother
  3. Read the entire Bible.
  4. Get up at 5 am and spend the first hour with God.

Every year I get the same results.

RELAX, I promise I am not going to talk about SMART goals. Take a deep breath. There are a lot more qualified people to talk about that subject. If you want to learn about SMART goals, ask Google, or Siri, or Alexa.

As God kept reminding me of Ally’s view of life, I realized I was the focus of those goals. Not only were they unrealistic, but all the focus was also on trying to create an organized tidy life, an illusion that I wanted to create. God asked me what it would look like if I moved number four up to the number one spot?

Put Jesus at the center of my focus.

What if?

When seen through the eyes of a three-year-old, life is so simple. Just look at Jesus.

When I feel overwhelmed with my to-do list. Look at Jesus.

When I feel my life unraveling. Look at Jesus.

When I just said good-bye to sanity. Look at Jesus.

When the darkness keeps whispering, failure. Look at Jesus.

That is my focus this year.  In John 15, Jesus tells us to abide in him, to remain in him and he will abide in us. As I move into this new year I will be looking to Jesus for my peace and my joy. While my books and my tidy home may spark joy, true joy can only be found when we look to Jesus and not the world.

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