Distractions

Because I have a hint of A.D.D. (some say more than a hint) I’m easily distracted.  This distraction, while it seems trivial to some, is really a painful lifelong challenge that causes every effort to be many times more difficult than it should be.  While I believe I have clinical A.D.D. I wonder if there aren’t many good church-going saints who don’t have a touch of spiritual A.D.D.

We are concerned with who is drinking, who is smoking, who is abusing drugs, prescription and non-prescription, who is cursing, who is good, who is bad, and on and on.  While these are not trivial topics, they seem to be an unwelcome distraction from the really important things.  And, as we’ve already stated, distractions make our primary tasks many times harder.

Jesus even addressed this very topic in Luke chapter 11:

“But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.”

It appears the Pharisees had forgotten the main point.  In other words, they had allowed themselves to get distracted.  They tithed all manner of things in order to please God, and somehow in the process forgot what God really required.  Jesus makes it clear there is nothing wrong with their tithing, but they have forgotten some things about God that are important like judgment and love.  Tithing, out of our love for God, is a great thing, but tithing simply to show others how ‘good’ we are is not.

When someone comes into our midst, who doesn’t look like we do, doesn’t act like we act, doesn’t believe like we believe – do we condemn them or love them?  Do we judge them or listen to them?  Do we shun them or embrace them?  Do we avoid them or draw them to ourselves?  This is a definite challenge.

But, we like drama.  The “grapevine” is full of drama.  “Did you hear about so-and-so?  I can’t believe the pastor doesn’t do something about it.”

“Have you heard the latest about Bro Divine?  Yes, it’s bad.”

It takes a lifetime to garner praise and respect, but only a few moments for any bad word to spread to hundreds or even thousands.  In many cases the ‘bad word’ is not even true, or filled with distortions of the facts.

The sooner we can realize we are all in the boat together, and there are no big “I’s” or little “U’s” the better.  Life is full of challenges and upsets, victories and defeats, good times and bad.  There are no exemptions, no free passes.  While wealth and position can smooth some of these things out, no one is completely immune.  When a loved one passes it doesn’t seem to matter if you are rich or poor, famous or unknown, it hurts the same.

We are told that when you get to the end of your rope, just tie a knot in the end and hang on.  Sometimes it does feel that way.  But, let me add something to that saying.  When you get to the end of your rope and you’ve tied a knot in order to hang on, reach out and grab someone else who has lost their grip and save them, too.  You can not only save yourself, but you can gain enough strength to help one more make it over the finish line.

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One Response to “Distractions”

  1. Barbara McGuire Says:

    Such an excellent blog! I so agree with you…..I do think the church world has spiritual A.D.D.! Great food for thought! Blessings…..

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