One of my favorite Disney movies is Up. You know, the one with the grumpy old man, Mr. Fredrickson, who goes on an incredible journey to visit Paradise Falls. He ends up taking this journey with Russell, a Junior Wilderness Explorer, who simply would not go away.
Their adventures bring them to meet a talking dog named Dug. Dug is your typical dog and loves to run, fetch, jump, and obey his master (although he can talk and of course that is not typical). However, Dug is easily distracted from his tasks by those eye-catching squirrels. No matter what he’s doing, if he sees a squirrel he immediately forgets everything and dashes off to chase it. The squirrels are seen as a fun game to him. With no thought needed, he trades in his small task for a quick game of squirrel chasing. What dog wouldn’t want to chase those animals?
Do you find that you are easily distracted from spending time in God’s Word?
I will be honest and say that I sure am!
Just this morning, distractions came flying out of every direction. I woke up at my usual time and got ready, but never made it to my quiet time with God. The first distraction came when I walked into the kitchen and saw a light on. My youngest daughter (8 years old) was awake and sitting in my writing room on the sofa, reading a book. Why is this a distraction for me? Well, it was 6:15 am and she is the child that I am usually dragging out of bed at the last minute to get ready for school. She wanted to finish reading her book so she could take an AR test today so that she could meet her AR goal by Friday.
She was sitting in my spot reading her book.
Can you tell I’m a creature of habit?
But, instead of telling her to get out of my spot so I could read the Bible, I let her sit there and read. I mean, the child was up reading a book at the crack of dawn so there’s no way I’m going to make her stop just so I can have “my spot” where I normally spend with God. So, I got my Bible, devotionals, and journal off the shelf and walked out.
Those things only made it as far as the kitchen where I left them on the counter when I remembered something else. The washing machine had just stopped and I needed to put the clothes into the dryer. Yes, I wash clothes at 5:30 in the morning, especially when I need to wash my sheets because my mom and cousin are coming today to stay a few nights and they need clean sheets to sleep on. I wanted to get them washed and dried before I left the house this morning so I made sure to pay attention to when the washer went off.
When that was finished, I went back to the kitchen and opened my Bible. I started reading a chapter in Proverbs. However, I didn’t get very far when I glanced up and the dishwasher caught my eye. Oh yeah, I forgot the dishes were clean and I needed to unload them before I left the house. I forgot to do it last night and I hate when they just sit there all clean in the dishwasher. I like things put away. So, I left my Bible open and moved over to unload those clean dishes.
I finished that and started to move back to my open Bible when I looked over at the clock on the stove. 6:30 am. It was time to wake up my oldest daughter. So, I take off up the stairs to conquer the task of trying to wake a sleeping child. (Never a fun task in my household. Glad it’s only one today and not two!)
When that was finished, I came back to the kitchen, read a verse, and then remembered something else: I need to make sure my bedroom and bathroom are clean since I’ve got visitors coming today. So, I quickly walk in there and begin picking up clothes and shoes and tidying up the bathroom sink area.
By this time, it’s 7:00 am and we need to eat breakfast and get out the door. No time for God this morning.
And just like that, my morning time with God had vanished.
All because I saw several squirrels of distraction and began chasing after them.
Do you know who loves distractions more than anything?
He is the one who LOVES to distract you. He throws those squirrels at you because he knows you will go chasing after them. He makes them look appealing, like you must do it right then or else you won’t remember. He will do absolutely anything to keep you from spending time with God. That’s his job. That’s what he thrives off doing. He is evil and does not like God and does not want any of God’s children spending time with Him. He is one big, sneaky squirrel. And I don’t like him. AT ALL.
How do we keep Satan from distracting us?
We must pray.
Pray for a strong mind Satan attacks your thoughts more often that you think. Ask God to give you a strong mind so you can resist Satan when he strikes and wants to distract you. Ask God to help you in giving every thought to Him. Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 10:5
We desire to be obedient to God, so we must commit to giving each and every thought over to God. Let Christ rule your mind and thoughts, and not Satan.
Pray for a renewed mind When we feel Satan attacking and distracting us, ask God to renew and transform your mind so that you can stand up against Satan, and so you can know and understand the will of God. A helpful Scripture to pray is Romans 12:2:
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Pray for focus Ask God to keep you from getting led astray, but to remain focused on Him. Paul was afraid that the Corinthians would be easily distracted and he wrote this to them in 2 Corinthians 11:3
But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ.
Don’t you want to have a sincere and pure devotion to Christ?
Then prepare yourself by praying. Make sure you are ready for the distractions that Satan sends your way. Preparing your mind and thoughts for this battle is necessary. Don’t let Satan easily take you away from the Lord. When Satan sends those squirrels in, get out your broom and swat them away. Send those squirrels away from you so that you can focus on THE one and only thing that desires your attention: