Thought- Competition for our time and our mental energy is fierce, and with all the potential distractions we need to intentionally make God our highest priority each day.
Scripture- “The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.” Luke 8:14
Insight: The reality of living in this technological age in 2019 is that there are distractions everywhere, and if we are not careful, they can overwhelm us in a choke hold that strangles God’s ability to grow and mature us in His word. These realities of life, which include entertainment, pleasure, riches, worries, sin, pride and anything else that can literally choke the effectiveness of what God is trying to accomplish in and through us. I can say honestly; I struggle mightily in some of these areas and I hear God pleading with me to lay them down so I can be a more effective servant of His. Just like you can’t serve two masters. God and money, you also can’t be half-pregnant when it comes to following Jesus. It is an all of nothing type of proposition where He must come first, before and above anything else in our life. He cannot bless us when we make him just another folder in our drawer, he must be the filing cabinet through which all the other folders reside.
Right now, I am struggling with laying down my obsession with my investment portfolio and checking it on a regular basis. It has become a sort of control addiction and it is hurting my ability to solely focus on God. It is like I need to feel something is of my own volition, when God clearly tells us to trust Him in all things and that all financial blessings are His anyway. So how do I respond? I am acknowledging my weakness in this area, I am asking for His strength, and I am seeking to pray more about giving up the illusion of control that reading about my investments appears to bring me. Mind you, this is only one small area where I have allowed the worries of this life to choke God’s effectiveness in my life. There are many more first cousins riding right alongside financial worry. Trusting in Him completely is always harder than we think and even our best laid intentions can come up woefully short. This is all apart of the growing we need to do in order to mature in our faith. John the Baptist summed it up perfectly for us in John 3:30 when he proclaimed the key to effective Christian living: “He must become greater; I must become less.”
Prayer: Lord- thank you for your patience with us as we struggle with laying down the things that only choke the effectiveness we seek from you by allowing them to linger in our life. Give us the strength to do better each and every day so that You can increase, and we can decrease in our walk on this earth. We pray in Jesus mighty name. Amen!