We live in a day and age of constant distractions. So many things steal our attention from the most important things in life—relationships, ministry, and most of all God. The tyranny of the urgent prevails! Even as I was trying to compose this blog, I got pulled away by a technology glitch. I got caught up in the details—again! Ugh!
We get so preoccupied with stuff—our possessions, problems, opinions of others, appearance, and of course our to-do list, especially this time of year! Did you notice that all of these are self-focused? That shouldn’t be surprising—we have a sinful nature. Is there no hope for us? Of course there is! Jesus has overcome our sinful nature.
If we want to stop being engulfed and overwhelmed with life, we need to do life God’s way and become preoccupied with Christ and His agenda instead of own.
Besides, I have found my way just doesn’t work. I want to think about Christ so much that I can’t think about anything or anyone else that doesn’t include Him in the picture. I want to be so immersed in Christ that:
- All decisions are made with God and His purposes in mind.
- All trials are seen in the light of His will and purpose.
- All of my desires are subservient to His; yet knowing I will be content even if I don’t get what I think I want.
- I am not so easily distracted by this world.
- When my emotions begin to take control, I quickly recognize it and hand the reins back over to Christ.
- When my needs don’t seem to be met, the truth of Scripture comes racing back into my mind so I can rest in His providence.
- When faced with temptation I remember the cross and His power to say no.
- I am aware God is with me every moment.
- Everything I say and do brings glory to God.
God needs to so deeply penetrate every aspect of our being that there is no room for the old sinful nature; only the new nature given to us at salvation. In an increasing manner, our old self should become more and more insignificant while our new self—under Divine control—is becoming more dominant, becoming our default setting. But how?
D. L. Moody once asked his audience, “How can I get the air out of this glass?” [i]
Answer: you fill it with water.
How do you get your old sinful self out of the picture?
Fill it with the Holy Spirit.
For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ… (Col 2:9-10)
You can become more preoccupied (filled) with Christ by:
- Choosing to.
You can train your brain to focus.
- Feeding your new nature and starving your old nature.
This is accomplished by reading God’s Word and applying it (includes obedience).
- Surrendering and remaining yielded to God so that you don’t quench the Holy Spirit. (1 Thes 5:19)
- Falling in love with your Savior.
…To know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. (Eph 3:19)
It’s easy to be enraptured by someone you love.
- Asking God to help you by praying something like this:
O Lord, empty me of me and fill me with You. I want to be preoccupied by You in every way; with every part of my being—heart, soul, mind, emotions, will, and desires under Your wonderful control. I want the fullness of Christ to be evident in my life so that all can see Your Glory manifested in me.
Will you become preoccupied with Christ as your present to Him this Christmas?
Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION® NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.