The problem with focusing on our smartphones, relationships, struggles, or anything else is that we take our eyes off Jesus. Instead of making Him our first thought and our last thought, we think about Him when it’s easy or convenient. But that’s not how we’re called to live—or think.
What if ____________ (fill in the blank with a biblical command) isn’t about if we feel like it? I admit that I act based on how I feel a lot. If reading my Bible is convenient, I’ll open it up. If being encouraging to a friend is comfortable, I’ll do it. If saying no to temptation is easy, I will. But that’s not how God designed for His people to live.
Jesus is our example in this situation, as He is in every situation. The disciples promised to stay with Him but quickly left Him. He could’ve left, too. He could’ve abandoned His mission. Instead, He watched and prayed. He asked God to be freed from His suffering, but He was also willing to die. What if the disciples had watched and prayed as well?
Being alone isn’t sinful, but neglecting our time with other believers is (Hebrews 10:25). Not only can we glean encouragement from other Christians, but we can—and should—encourage them also. We’re all hearing the same kinds of lies from Satan, and we’re all called to obey the same Truth.
Center-stagers, like pastors, worship leaders, Bible study teachers, and ministry directors, are often in the spotlight. Behind-the-sceners, like those who work in the sound booth, organize children’s ministries, and order supplies for activities, are often in the background. Both center-stagers and behind-the-sceners can be used by God in amazing ways. But it’s so easy to neglect the behind-the-sceners because they work in the background.
Why does it sometimes seem impossible to pursue Him? Maybe because we’re human, we’re sinful, and we're self-centered. Maybe it's even easier to pursue something we can see than a God we can't see. But just because we can't see Him doesn't mean He isn't here.
I know how much you want to destroy your idols, and I know how much you want to keep them. I know how impossible it feels not to worship them. I may set goals, have high ambitions, and desire to change. But I still feel like I’ll always be ruled by my idols. So how do I stop? How do we stop?
I know it’s hard to be honest in a high-and-mighty Christian society. It feels like the Christians who set unrealistic goals for other Christians never talk about their sins and their hardships. It causes us to wonder if their struggles even exist. Friend, just because people don’t talk about their issues doesn’t mean they don’t have issues. Not only am I guilty of inwardly judging others for their sins, but I’m also guilty of hiding my sins from them.