Hey friends, how are you today? How was your week? Well, fall has certainly entered the ‘chat room’ in our neck of the woods (I’ve got kids; it is inevitable that I will use a bit of their language lingo, although if they hear me, a frown will appear on their faces). The mornings and evenings are chilly and throughout the day, the temperature hardly gets out of the 60(s)°. Can you believe we are three months away from Christmas? I mean… really? September has two days left then October will make its way. How have you lived the past year? Has it been filled with distractions like mine has been? Some distractions, I admit were intentional, while others came unexpectedly.
Two weeks ago, we began our Sunday School classes after more than a year and a half of shut down, due to you know what. The objective of our ladies’ study is to simplify our lives with the purpose of becoming wholly devoted to Jesus Christ. Initially when I first saw the title of the study book, which is Becoming a woman of Simplicity, by Cynthia Heald, I was a bit hesitant and wary. “Lord will this be one of those capsule wardrobe advocates?”, I wondered, “because I’m not getting rid of my clothes”. Maybe I should also tell you that I was chosen to teach this class! Oh, the irony…
Anyway, the author of this study had determined that as ladies and I’m so sure, (based on my husband) men too, we have the tendency to ‘do’ too much, to ‘be’ too much, to ‘go’ too much. We have the tendency to allow too much and too many into our lives which causes us to become distracted from our primary goal, as Christians, which is to love the Lord with all our heart, with all our soul and with all our might.
We have allowed many distractions, dear friends, and to successfully serve the Lord well, these distractions must be placed appropriately or be removed altogether, if possible. As ladies, we take pride in being busy, busy with the kids or grandkids, busy with aging parents, busy with chores, busy with work, busy with people, busy with events, even busy about the Lord’s work. Most of our busy comes as a result of the ‘good’ we want to attain, which in itself is not a bad thing. But anything that distracts us from spending quality time with the Lord is bad for our spiritual health. Too often, I would dare to say, we either spend time with the Lord out of duty or not at all. That is evident in the performance of the very duties that keep us busy.
Too many times, throughout the day, we are frustrated, overwhelmed, angry, depressed, bitter over matters that creep into our lives. Perhaps it’s that someone that behaved unexpectedly, or that event that did not go as planned, or that duty that took much longer to be completed, or that help that never showed. How we handle these issues and how soon we get over these emotions, ultimately tell the story of our spiritual health.
Our enemy delights in the things that distract us from becoming wholly devoted to Jesus Christ. When I was younger (well much younger) I used to think that becoming wholly devoted to Christ came at the exclusion of everything else, including husband and kids, home, and work. But that is inaccurate thinking. Devotion to Jesus Christ gives everything else in my life it’s rightful place. The Lord brings balance to my life that is literally unattainable without Him.
I will love others and serve them humbly when I am devoted to Christ. I will perform my duties with diligence and integrity when I am wholly devoted to Christ. I will admonish and show compassion and pity to others with discernment and wisdom. I will be slow to speak and swift to listen (James 1:19) and I will count it all joy even in the face of tragedy. Everyone and everything will be given the care and attention they deserve when I am wholly devoted to Christ.
This past year has been rather wearying and at times, my soul has been despondent because of the unexpected trials but that is primarily because I’ve placed my eyes on my circumstances instead of Jesus Christ. My soul longs for my Lord and is only truly satisfied when I am less distracted and fully devoted to Him.
Let’s journey together along this path of becoming wholly devoted to Christ. How have you lived this past year?