The definition of distraction is an extreme agitation of the mind. Agitated is a good way to explain the way I feel when things, thoughts, lights, animals , anything really, pull me from one train of thought into another. I feel like my brain needs some kind of brace to support all the mental whiplash moments I go through.
The thing that saddens me and frustrates me the most is that I’ve spent so many years distracted that I’ve lost my ability to trust myself. I have a hard time remembering anything or find it difficult to even make a good choice sometimes, especially when it comes to food and especially when I feel agitated. I’m so mentally fried from all the “fill”, that getting my mind to engage is a chore in and of itself some days. (my “fill” has a lot to do with my toxic thoughts many related to food and body image, but we’ll get to later) So, I started to rely on all kind of tools to help me remember things, but those tools don’t always help because the become distractions too.
Did you know that God has given us the brain capacity for hundreds of years of memories and thoughts? And, we’re only using around 10% of our brain’s capacity, at best! In a recent bible study on the magnitude of the human minds capacity, I learned that because of our over stimulated mind we are over consumed by thoughts and opinions of others that we read on the news, social media, and dare I say even text commentaries for bible reading time that we end up drowning out the Holy Spirit’s voice. There are too many other things calling for our attention, and we need to stop the agitation of our minds so that we can hear and obey the LORD above the rules and laws of the world.
Most of our fatigue and burdens come from trying to meet the ever changing expectations of the world and trying to fit ourselves into a mold that we don’t be long in
Prayer is more than just talking to God; it should actually be more about listening to Him, but because of our extremely agitated mind, we lose our ability to hear Him, therefore missing our calling, purpose, and destiny. When we don’t spend time listening to Him and talking with Him we are missing out of the greatest joy we can experience on this side of heaven, in a relationship with Him. A relationship with Him and trusting in Him is were all life, health, and healing exist!
Imagine, for a moment, a day that you felt good inside and out. The day you felt productive, purposeful, energized, joyful. Now think what if that was every day?!
We’ve been created for a peaceful life, created for the capability to be overcomers of all things that come our way because of Jesus Christ who lives within us. How amazing would it be to fully utilize the power of the mind that God has given us? This doesn’t mean that no difficulty will come, because it will come, but it means that we don’t get agitated by it, but live in peace knowing God is in control. How wonderful right!? #lifegoals.
The Opposite of Agitated is Peaceful
Scripture tells us time and time again that our battle is one that requires us to capture or thoughts and change our direction from agitation, anger, sadness, defeat… to a mind filled with what is true, right, pure, righteous, and honorable thoughts. (Philippians 4:8) A mind in a state of peace is a mind prepared to work at its full capacity. Unfortunately, Satan knows that when we engage our mind with faith in the peace and joy of God, we can move mountains. So, before we get too far on the changing power of our mind Satan initiates a distraction tactic.
Too often our distractions leave us feeling empty and deflated. We lay in bed wondering why things are going so fast, and what our purpose is, each of us hearing a small stirring inside telling use that you were made for more than this .
When we end up allowing distractions and burdens to reign in our lives, we end up like the dry bones of Ezekiel 37. Lifeless and burnt out. It’s time we speak out over ourselves and each other the truth of God so that we may have life in us again. It’s time we leave agitation and enter peace. It’s time we turn to the power of the Holy Spirit who lives within us and enter into prayer and thanksgiving in the moments that we start to feel defeated. The more we anchor ourselves in truth and practice the mind renewal, the quicker we’ll be able to overcome the negative thought patters that tend to haunt us and hold us captive. We can change our past thought patters and create a godly mind-set and make peace our default response to anything that comes our way.
Our beautiful minds are capable of far more than we could ever imagine as long their set on things not of this world. I don’t know about you, but I want to use more than my 10% brain capacity. It excites me to think of what could happen if I turn my mind over to God and let Him lead the way. The days where I’m a little more successful at defeating my distractions are the days, I see the Holy Spirit a little more and the things He does through me, blow my mind! It’s through stepping out in faith and love that He gets to show us His will, His ways, His plans.
The most wonderful thing about life as a follower of Jesus, is that we get to keep practicing over and over at stepping into our calling to follow, depend on, trust and let go of all that holds us back so that we can live in the peace and joy of God.
Leaving agitation for peace isn’t something we can muster up enough strength to do on our own, it comes from God. It comes from entering His presence. Our flesh will always fall short on its own, because we’ll become tired and weary, but by knowing and believing in our hearts that God is working out all things, we can rest in knowing that no matter what comes our way, He’s with us and has a purpose for every situation – the good and the bad! God – our steadfastness of calm in our storms, our direction when we feel lost and our guiding light in the darkness. Let’s step into a fuller capacity that stands above fear, insecurities, doubts and distractions. We need to take our head knowledge of who God is and let it transform our actions, thoughts, choices and be renewed even to the transformation of our DNA.
Walking on Water or….
Walking On Water Matthew 14:28-33
And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” 29 He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind,[d] he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” 31 Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. 33 And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
It’s amazing how the slightest glance away from Jesus can make us sink. I’ve felt that and lived that over and over again, but the other thing that is also always true is that Jesus immediately reaches out his hand to take hold of us before we sink. But are you even looking up to see His hand?
I read the book, Prince Warriors by Priscilla Shire, to my daughters. Such a wonderful series that teaches the importance of keeping in step with the Holy Spirit. In the book, these warriors receive the armor of God and begin their journey of learning how to use the armor in some pretty intense situations (sanctification). On their journey they encounter battles that teach them how to rely on the armor more and more with every attack. They increase their knowledge of the power of the Armor so that when things get harder, they have built the trust and faith in the steadfastness of their protective guide.
One of my favorite parts about the journey these kids are on is that in the midst of the scary attacks they face, the armor doesn’t lay out the whole route to get them free from their current struggle, but instead only reveals one step at a time. They have to trust that the next step will be revealed if they take the first step of faith, take the only step that is set right before them. Many times, they are put in situations where they don’t even see a place to put their foot, but their chest plate is telling them to step anyway. One scene stands out specifically, they are asked to step in the middle of the sky off the side of a cliff. They have a choice, trust that the orb leading them is right or be captured by their attackers. Now if the orb is not right, they fall to their death – so what do you do?
I love the application of this to our daily lives. The way we learn that big or little, any struggle should cause us to lean into God and His tools for guidance and protection, we learn we can indeed trust Him and therefore are willing to reach further and further and trust deeper and deeper. It s all about relationship, Him guiding and protecting, us trusting and believing in Him.
The fruits of the Holy Spirit are our weapons against the spiritual forces that attack us. Our job is to trust, obey, and have faith… But because of our lack of co-operation with the armor of God, we end up prisoners to our attackers because we didn’t just take the next step that was set before us. Personally, I’d much rather know the whole route to where I’m going next, but we’re only given one objective at a time.
God wants our full attention and trust no matter what crosses our bath. He wants us to stop living as a slave to the things of this world and live as fully filled and fully trusting women who know without a single doubt that God will provide whatever we need for whatever He asks us to stop into. We can either obey and step into our freedom and purpose or we can be afraid to move and miss the opportunities to be free and walking in our destiny.
Our walk with God requires faith, but without knowing His character, faith falls flat. God is always revealing a way forward, showing us our next step. In Matthew we’re told that today has enough troubles of its own and to be present today, yet we all want to run ahead with our own pursuits or worse yet not doing anything because of fear. We are, however, called to wait on the LORD, keep in step with Him and co-operate in our sanctification process. I’ve been a go-getter much of my life chasing after my desires and wishing God would keep up with me instead of the other way around. That has always led to falling flat on my face. If I wasn’t chasing after my desires, I was sitting in fear afraid to move because I didn’t want to fail again. I’d allow all the distractions of my fears, doubts and need to control everything, prevent me from hearing God’s voice and if I did feel him stirring me, I’d be too uncertain with myself or knowledge of who God is to obey.
For the next series of blogs We’ll talk about some of the key distractions we face and learn about God’s character so that when he stirs something inside of us, we won t be uncertain, but willing to obey – trusting and knowing that His ways are always better. He knows where we are going, we don’t. So, I don’t know why we continue to try to drive a car blindfolded when we have a driver who love us dearly and is taking us to our wonderful promised land. God is the only way to rise above the chains that hold us down, it s time we stop just saying we believe the things in the Bible and start letting the truth transform our actions too.
Throughout this blog series we will focus on scripture at the end of each so that we can begin to allow the Word renew our thoughts. Reading these passages only once will have a small impact but reading them over and over and over will change your fleshly default response and beliefs to the godly and life-filled default response of living in the Kingdom of God. You will alter your mind, your body, your cells, even your DNA.
Scripture to Meditate On
John 16:33 – I have said these things to you, that in me you have peace. In the world you have tribulation. But take heart, I have overcome the world.
Psalm 4:8 – In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O LORD, make me dwell in safety.
Corinthians 14:33a – For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.
Romans 14:19 – So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual up building.
Matthew 7:24 – Everyone then who hears these words of mind and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.
James 2:14 – So also faith by itself, it it does not have works, is dead
Timothy 3:16 – All scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction and for training in righteousness.
Romans 8:28 – And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Psalm 138:8 – The LORD will fulfill His purpose for me; your steadfast love, O LORD, endures forever. do not forsake the work of your hands