As the new year began, I chose a word to focus on through out the year. My word for this year was "grow". Fast forward to August, and here I am, growing closer to my husband, growing up a human (sometimes that still freaks me out), growing a business, growing a home (we are building sillies, don't start the pregnancy rumors), and most importantly, growing deeper in my faith.
Yes, this is my photography blog. But I wouldn't be "standing on the solid ground" if I didn't mention my God somewhere in this website. So here goes: here and there, I will be sharing my heart, not just cute babies, fun families and mushy couples.
So, distractions. We all have them. Cell phones, social media, horns honking, squirrels (okay so maybe that's just for the pups), and many other things and noises that distract and detour our train of thought. Have you ever sat down to make a grocery list while juggling parenthood. You write "milk", but then your presence is requested to wipe someone who just went potty. You go back to your list and think, "okay, dinner Monday night...we will have..." and then someone screams because their favorite toy of the minute fell under the couch. This pattern just repeats itself until you finally load up to go to Publix, and realized you never even got past the word "milk". Mommyhood is full of distractions, but this isn't for just moms so I will stop with the example.
We, as humans, tend to only focus on the tangible. Our books we read, the road we are driving on, our conversation with our spouses, it's easy to just merely focus on those tasks and relationships that we can "touch". If you don't focus on the steering wheel, you'll wreck. If you stop reading, well, you stop reading.
So what happens when you get distracted from your faith? What happens when you are so "wore slap out", you forget to pray? Well, that leads me to a recent event where I really feel like God did something for me.
A few Sundays ago, I was in church. We hadn't made it far into service; it was about one song into worship. It was HOT. The AC was broken and you could see dew on the shiny floor (um ew, that's from people breathing into the hot, muggy air, ew). There were a ton of people there that day. Maybe it was because my core temperature was 127 degrees, but it felt like people were breathing and singing right in my face. I kept watching our worship team, and tried to focus on opening up my mind for the next hour of service, but every time I would give my energy to worship, I was quickly distracted by my husband's sweaty arm. Y'all want to know how distracted and unfocused I was? I didn't even drink my coffee. And that's bad.
Then, just as I was getting into a good and focused place (and yes, I had to pep talk myself), the row behind me started talking. I am talking full blown conversation. Like, the whole row. It was as if I was being Punk'd by someone. I glared at my husband in frustration, and he quickly squeezed my hand with his sweaty grossness. I almost gave up on getting anything from this service, but then the real message happened.
My fifteen minutes in the hot volcano of distractions was like our lives. We are in a good place, I mean, what's better than an awesome church, with an awesome husband, with my awesome baby in the awesome nursery. Everything is just right; but because of distractions and the world around us, I couldn't focus on what was important. I truly had to make it a point to get rid of the distractions (no, I didn't kill the people behind me), to allow me to hear the Word that day. I had to laugh and say in my mind, "Okay, I am cool, but not like cool cool, but temperature wise, I am cool. It's not too bad in here. The people behind me aren't there. I can't hear them. All I can is my pastor giving us the Word today." After saying that to myself and purposely drowning out the distractions around me, I was able to draw closer. I was able to hear an amazing message. It didn't come natural for me that day; stopping the distractions and opening up my ears (and heart and mind). So, I thought, what would happen if I took a few minutes a day (or more) and got rid of the distractions and prayed, or listened, or read to draw closer to God. Maybe I would hear His purpose for my life? Maybe I would stumble upon more peace?
Maybe, just maybe, I could get rid of distractions a few moments a day to draw closer to my husband. Or my son. I could turn off the TV. Put down the phone. Just get to a quiet place and spend time with my priorities.
Just sharing my heart here, but the bossy part of me says "Stop the distractions. Put that work down on your desk. Stop reading this (okay, finish, but then stop) and go sit down next to your spouse. Freak them out when you ask "how was your day". Go ask your kids, "who wants a popsicle outside before bed". Turn off the TV, go to your quiet place, and open up the good stuff. Whether it's a Bible or your latest devotional, just get UNdistracted and hear what He has to say to you today.
I had to laugh that day in church. It felt like God was imitating my grandma in church when I was little. It was like he gave me a glare, smiled, then pointed to the front as if saying "you better pay attention". If only he had candy in purse, that I could munch on, too.