Praying and Refocusing

Pierre-Édouard_Frère_-_Interior_Scene_with_Woman_Praying_-_Walters_371370Confession…I lost my focus for a while there. As most of you already know, our family been going through a season of transition for the last, I don’t know, 3 years! Good night! We’ve been fighting the good fight and standing strong in faith, but we we have grown tired and restless. I found myself asking too often, is this it? Is this all there is? Surviving?! The whining? I had started to do too much of it. I mean, seriously, can I get some cheese to go with my WHINE!

So, what does one do when this happens? Obviously, we should get refocused, but how do you get refocused? How do you find your focal point when life gets hard. It’s hard to get refocused when you are getting hit from all sides without any reprieve, but it is necessary, dare I say, critical. The God answer is to pray, right? Now, I know there are those of you out there who pray right off the bat and life goes very well for you. I am not being sarcastic at all with that comment, seriously that is amazing! I wish I was there. Apparently, I am not. I am a little bit slower to learn, and for those of us who learn a little bit more slowly, we turn to everything but prayer. I turn to food. Then I turn to electronic distraction. AND now that I’m a working mom, I turn to work to find distraction. When I run that cycle and realize that didn’t work, I turn to another set of distractions by the name of worry and control. It’s a bad cycle that culminates with that the realization that NONE of those things worked and I should maybe talk to God. <sigh> I am exhausted just recounting the dysfunctional system I employ far too often.

The last couple of weeks, God has been speaking to me about how often I run to other things to solve my problems. I’ve been looking for purpose and meaning in my job, in my marriage, in my kids success or failure, and I’ve found nothing that gives me purpose or vision for my life. He’s been talking to me about how I am looking to those things to tell me who I am and what I will be. I am looking to those things to define me and give me a hope. It’s unfair to do that. It’s unfair to my employer to expect that my future will be found there. It is unfair to expect that my husband to define my worth. It is unfair to expect that my children will reflect my competence by their success. Not only is it unfair, it is ungodly! Yikes!

So, what do you do when you lose focus? You pray! You pray and you pray. Then you back your prayer up with some more prayer. I’ve spent that last couple of weeks in prayer and I honestly still don’t know what the future holds for us. However, as we pray, God is giving us peace. He’s also giving us visions and dreams for our future. The dreams God has put in our hearts are amazing, but I don’t know when He will bring those dreams to fruition. Matthew 6:31-33 tells me this:

Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

God will take care of us. He will provide for us. AND He will give reality to the dreams HE puts in our hearts. I cannot seek His kingdom if I am seeking distraction from the now. I can’t go to my knees in prayer if I am self soothing with my eating or finding distractions in electronics or distracting myself with work. So, I will work, praying that God get the glory from each day. I will saturate my husband and children with prayer.  I will seek His kingdom in those areas of my life and trust that He has got my future in His hands.

Until another confession…

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