Monday, March 12, 2012

Distractions Cause Division

"Teach me your way, LORD, that I may rely on your faithfulness; 
give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name."
Psalm 86:11 (NIV)
At the prompting of my husband, I decided to write. He suggested I just begin to pen the things the Lord has been speaking to my heart. Unknowingly, He had actually been addressing the same issue in both of us - our divided hearts. Even before our Bible study lesson yesterday morning on the topic, God had been speaking.
To me, the Lord has been speaking about distractions. He has prompted me to consider what things were distracting me from Him. What things were contributing to an over-arching feeling of discontentment in my life? What was making me want to just pull the covers over my head some days? What was making my time with Him feel dull and dissatisfying? The answer was... distractions. 
I began to make the connection. Distractions cause division. Divison of my heart from God. Division in my relationships with other people. Distractions keep me from walking in step with the Lord and have caused a condition biblically known as a "divided heart".
So what have been the culprits? As I asked God to impress upon my heart anything that was keeping me from a closeness with Him, about three things came to mind. Mainly, things I disconnect and zone out with... a TV show that I can watch re-run after re-run of (and mind you, I rarely even watch TV - in fact I usually have to ask my kids to work the remote!); a particular website (one that is helping me be more productive - but too much of a good thing causes me to disconnect with those around me); and my smart phone (information at your fingertips can be both a huge help and a major distraction). In fact, when I first got my smart phone, my husband and kids would tease almost anytime I picked it up saying, "intervention!"
None of these things in and of themselves are particularly wrong, but when they take the place of time I could be connecting with God, worshiping through any manner of outlets (including writing), or serving those I love, they become idols in my life. And idol-worship is sin. God's Word says in Leviticus 32:16, "They made him jealous with their foreign gods and angered him with their detestable idols." When I turn to anything other than God to fill me up, I am forsaking the One to whom I am betrothed. The only One that can truly satisfy me. When I let such things as TV, websites or my phone get out of balance to the point of tuning God and my loved ones out, I end up divided, distracted, discontent, depressed and downright discouraged. I end up in need of divine intervention!
I am so thankful my God loves me enough to intervene and make me aware when I've gotten off track. My heart's desire is to serve Him with clean hands and a pure heart. My whole heart. An undivided heart.

Father God, Thank You for loving me enough to call me on the things that do not bring honor and glory to You. Thank You for reminding me that while technology and other things are not bad in and of themselves, too much of them and not enough YOU will leave me dissatisfied and discontent. They'll leave me with a divided heart. Thank You for my husband who loved me enough to recognize the discontentment within and who sought to minister to and encourage me in that place - pointing me back to You. Lord, grant me an undivided heart. In the most satisfying name I know, the name of Jesus, I ask these things ~ Amen.