Squirrels!!! (And Other Distractions)
by Hannah Keeley
My dog, Oscar, is so easily distracted. No matter where you are or what you’re doing, if you say the word, “squirrel,” his ears perk up and he runs to the nearest window.
And Oscar isn’t the only one with a distraction problem. In today’s world, it’s more difficult than ever to stay on target and keep your focus. There are a million things out there vying for our attention. So, how do we avoid the attraction of distraction?
I learned this lesson the other day when I was out walking. As I was huffing and puffing down the road, I saw a man on the road ahead walking toward me with two dogs on a leash. As we got closer, I heard him say to his dogs, “Leave it!”
Whoa…am I the “it?” Seriously? You’re refering to me as an “it?” Maybe I had just heard him wrong. His dogs began looking in my direction and pulling at the leash to come toward me. He then said it again,
Although this time, he said it much more emphaticly. Yes, I guess I was the “it.” he was refering to. How demoralizing! But, evidently it worked! His dogs stopped, sat down, and waited patiently for me to pass them by. I could see longing in their eyes as they stared in my direction. They wanted to come over toward “it” so badly! But, they were obedient and stayed on target. Let me just insert here that it was awkward for all of us. It was awkward for me to be tagged “it.” It was awkward for the dogs to sit and wait. And, I’m hoping it was a bit awkward for the man. But, maybe not.
Aside from being an “it,” here’s the lesson I learned–
We NEVER stop being attracted to distraction! We’re wired that way. And for many of us, we’re wired very heavily that way! But God knows that and He’s always willing to meet us right where we are.
Proverbs 4: 25-27 tells us, “Let your eyes look right on [with fixed purpose], and let your gaze be straight before you. Consider well the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established and ordered aright. Turn not aside to the right hand or to the left; remove your foot from evil.”
We’ll always have “squirrels” and “its” in our lives. The important thing is not so much how to eliminate distraction, but how to be obedient when it surfaces. God commands us to look right on with fixed purpose, and to not turn aside to the right or the left. This is FOCUS, Mama! Those dogs were obedient to their master and they left “it” alone! No matter what the distraction, call it for what it is, and turn away from it. As you grow in your obedience to God, and develop this self-control, you will get better and better at it.
Just remember this one phrase when you’re tempted to grab your phone or leave your chore, or whatever the distraction-of-the-moment may be: LEAVE IT!
Hannah Keeley was once in overwhelmed mom living in a cluttered house, deep in debt, out of shape, and barely hanging on. But one day, after finding herself sobbing uncontrollably into a pile of clean laundry, she realized God has bigger and better plans for her (just like He does for each one of His children). Beginning that day, she began making changes in her life that took her from overwhelmed to overjoyed. Today, she’s helping moms do the same. Hannah, her husband, Blair, and their seven children live in Richmond, Virginia, and are having the time of their lives!
Check out Hannah’s Website Here!
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