Cutting through The Distractions

Luke 10:40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.

Intro: Today’s believer is plagued with a life of turmoil, chaos, confusion, split-loyalties, schedule conflicts. God never intended for the child of God to run around like a chicken with their head cut off!

  • God never intended for the church to be a hub of barren busyness.
  • God never intended for the home to simply be a place where married couples and their offspring co-exist.
  • God never intended for the child of God to go for days without spending time with Him.

In a day and age where technology has created a variety of ways to connect the entire world, God’s people are becoming more and more disconnected from their God, their spouses, their family and their church.

Definition: CUMBERED: to draw around, to draw away, distract, to be driven about mentally, to be distracted, to be over-occupied, too busy, about a thing

Martha was so preoccupied, that she was missing out on things that were far better.

We many times allow things to distract us

 

I. Acknowledge the Problem of Distractions

We live in a fast-paced world. Multi-tasking wasn’t even heard of twenty years ago. We have risen to the level of doing literally everything all at the same time. Notice an excerpt from this article:

According to scientists, the age of smartphones has left humans with such a short attention span even a goldfish can hold a thought for longer.

Researchers surveyed 2,000 participants in Canada and studied the brain activity of 112 others.

The results showed the average human attention span has fallen from 12 seconds in 2000, or around the time the mobile revolution began, to eight seconds.

Goldfish, meanwhile, are believed to have an attention span of nine seconds.

The research follows a study by the National Centre for Biotechnology Information and the National Library of Medicine in the US that found 79 per cent of respondents regularly “dual screen” by using portable devices while watching TV.

  • James 1:8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.

DOUBLEMINDEDwavering, uncertain, doubting, divided in interest

The telephone was invented in 1876. First mobile phone was invented in 1973. Became widely available mid-80’s.

Yet we can’t go ANYWHERE without our phone, which serves as our GPS, our camera, our datebook, address book, laptop, weather, encyclopedias, shopping cart, newspaper, magazines, library, CD player, radio, TV, DVD player, Gameboy, coupon book, calculator, storage device, wallet, Bible, calendar, alarm clock, …you get the point.

People are overwhelmed with options and distractions.

In a blog post on Tuesday, Nielsen reported that on average, US homes receive 189.1 TV channels, but viewers only watch 17.5 of those channels.

Taking on too many commitments; unable to say no is a problem for a lot of people.

Do you feel obligated to perform up to everyone’s expectations; hate to let people down.

QUOTE: “You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.” ― Winston S. Churchill

 

II. Admit your Power over the Distractions

  • Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might;

As Christians, we have been given ALL POWER.

We have the authority to do amazing things.

If your favorite phrase is, “I can’t do anything about it…”, then you are undermining your own authority.

If you insist on living your life as a victim of circumstance, you will never be victorious over anything – EVER!

 

ILLUSTRATION: REMEMBER the Smokey the Bear signs? Only you can prevent forest fires!

Only you can prevent your life from becoming a forest fire.

Most of the things that are in your life that distract you are self-inflicted.

You have enabled things, devices, inventions and technology to distract you.

  • Eliminate or reduce the notifications on your phone.
  • Turn off your email notifications
  • Get your spending in check so that you can control your finances
  • Make a budget and plan your finances.
  • Spend some quality time PLANNING your life. Have a strategic approach.
  • Stop flying by the seat of your pants. Have a plan and follow it.
  • Schedule things; make lists. Maximize your time.
  • 1 Corinthians 14:40 Let all things be done decently and in order.

NOTE: God took 6 days to create the world. He could have done it in one statement.

QUOTE: Plan your work, and then work your plan.

Get control of your life and stop being a victim of your circumstances.

 

III. Arrange your Priorities amid the Distractions

 

FAMILY:

Make building relationships with your spouse and your children a priority!

  • Ephesians 6:4 And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

NURTURE: tedious training and care

This takes time! You have to make family time a priority.

CHURCH:

Stop allowing everyone to dictate your church attendance.

King David was extremely busy I imagine, but going to church wasn’t an intrusion into his life. He looked forward to it!

  • Psalms 122:1 I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.

Take eliminating those times and ministry opportunities off of the table – make them non-negotiable priorities.

Don’t give up ground in your service and ministry to God.

  • Mark 10:45 For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister…

TIME WITH GOD:

Make spending time with God to build your spiritual man a priority! Find a time, and place and focus only on HIM!

  • Psalms 55:17 Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.
  • Isaiah 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.

Just like you have to eat physically, you MUST take time to eat spiritually!

  • Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Conclusion: Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.

Can you hear his voice? He wants to spend time with you. Open the door!