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Friday, 17 February 2012

Easily Distracted

Every one of our children received the same corrective admonition on report cards: easily distracted. Well. It was obvious a teenager would be easily distracted when sitting in an open-plan classroom where everyone was working at different speeds, moving around freely. 

But it isn’t just teenagers in open-plan classrooms who are easily distracted. I was easily distracted on my walk this morning. I like to spend the time talking and listening to God, but this morning my mind, when it wasn’t snoozing, was jumping randomly here and there. Worries and concerns. Joys and sorrows. Mainly, a to-do list that is longer than the day.

There is something to be said for chanting, or reciting, a mantra. Other religious disciplines do it in order to slip into an altered state of consciousness. To repeat the name Jesus Christ on each breath in and out helps focus the mind. It opens us up to God’s influence. It clears our head of all the jumble so we can hear his voice.

In Mark 4 there’s a story of the disciples being caught in a terrible storm on the Sea of Galilee during the night, a storm through which Jesus slept until they, in a panic, wakened him. Then, with a commanding voice, he spoke to the storm. “Quiet! Be still!” And the storm subsided. 

My thoughts today are not a perfect storm, but they are a distraction. I want to focus in on the Lord who has the power to calm the turbulence and to restore peace to my soul.

Jesus Christ.

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