Living With Focus

Photo by jesadaphorn taken from
Photo by jesadaphorn taken from

There’s nothing more frustrating than looking back on a busy, tiring day and realizing you’ve accomplished nothing. Or at least, nothing of value. Or to embark on a task, perhaps seven or eight times in a day, only to be distracted, seven or eight times.

We all have those days, right? Times when our lack of focus, lack of prioritizing, eats up our productivity. But we mustn’t let those times of distraction and futility, of wasted effort, become a norm.

We all have countless opportunities set before us each day, sometimes even great opportunities, eternally impacting opportunities, but that doesn’t mean each one is for us. God has carved out a unique path for each one of us. He’s created us, gifted us, molded and equipped us, to fill a very specific role.

I love how Ephesians 2:10 puts it: “For you are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus to do the good things He planned for us long ago” (NLT).

We are God’s masterpiece! That word grabs me every time. As does the ending of the verse, “He planned for us long ago.”

It reminds me that God has a plan, a very good and very specific plan, for my life. My role is to discover that plan and follow it ps37v23to24jpgwith everything within me, resisting the constant pull to be everything to everyone. Rather, I am to give everything–my time, energy, thoughts, and actions–to the Son.

Proverbs 4:25-27 says “Look straight ahead, and fix your eyes on what lies before you. Mark out a straight path for your feet; stay on that safe path. Don’t get sidetracked; keep your feet from following evil” (NLT).

This verse speaks of determined focus, of perseverance, of intentionality. Of zeroing in on whatever it is Christ is calling me to do each day. Which implies taking the time to discover what He’s calling me to do. Which in turn implies taking the time to prayerfully read His Word each morning.

livingbygracepic.jpLet’s talk about this! What about you? What is God calling you to do today? Raise your children or grandchildren to love and honor Christ? Reveal Christ’s love and grace in your work place? Serve in a church ministry with excellence? Are you doing that with focus, perseverance, and intentionality? Are you giving your whole self to that task, or have you allowed nonessentials to leave you divided? What time-sappers have you allowed in your day that hinder your effectiveness? Share your thoughts here in the comments below or at Living by Grace on Facebook.

We can’t do it all. Each day, we’re going to have to let something go. Let’s let those things go intentionally so that we can “fix our eyes on what lies before us.”

For all the mommas of little ones out there, my friend (and the marketing manager of New Hope Publishers) has a series I know you’ll find encouraging and inspiring. You can read about that here.

You might also be interested in:

Are the Little Things Really Little? 

In the Little Things

Called and Accountable by Henry T. Blackaby and Norman C. Blackaby

Before I go, I wanted to announce the winners of last week’s give away! Maryann, congrats! You won a copy of the Shepherd’s Song! I’ll be contacting you shortly to chat about the best way to get that novel to you. And, there’s still time to enter the drawing to receive a copy of Kelly O’Dell Stanley’s book Praying Upside Down. You can do so here.

Before I go, I wanted to invite you listen to a radio interview I did Tuesday. You can do so here:

I also encourage you to sign up for my (really, our, as I and the Faith, Friends, and Chocolate gals put it out together) free quarterly newsletter, which is packed with great stuff–a serial story, short stories, recipes, devotions, and more!

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  1. This is another problem area for me also as I leave the workplace and embark on expanding my writing and photography! Thanks for sharing from your life as well as some godly wisdom.


    1. How exciting–that you’re taking steps to grow in and increase your writing! I always get excited when I learn of people making their giftedness a priority! May God guide you as you seek His will and surrender your gifting and time to Him. 🙂 Blessings!

      1. God has been faithful and guiding my steps. Unfortunately, not without a fair amount of anger and yelling at him on my part. You’d think I’d outgrow that frustration on my part, wouldn’t you? But I felt so strongly he was calling me to move on with my life, but each time I did, the job search would pick up speed. I’m waiting on this last job opportunity, then I’m announcing in my blog that my tax career is over and I’m moving on.

      2. I am so sorry to hear that. I’ve had good and bad experiences, but I’ve been fortunate to have more good than bad. And yet, I’ve also found all people are back-biting to some degree, myself included. hahaha. That’s something I must continually work on. 🙂

        I imagine your experiences have led to a lot of pain and deep wounds. May God bring you comfort and healing, and help you find loving, supportive Christians who can encourage and uplift you. Hugs, friend!

      3. Thanks Jennifer! There are good Christians out there and I’ve made some great friends in church. It’s a good reminder to look for them too.

      4. 🙂 Have a great weekend! Hubby and I are going to the park–one with a nice walking/bike/running path–tomorrow, and I can’t wait. I hope you’ll get some writing time this weekend! And maybe some park time, if you enjoy that.

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