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February 22, 2011 – Luke 8

Click here to read Luke 8 on BibleGateway.com

Do you ever get the feeling that you’re focused on the wrong thing? A lot (maybe all)of magic tricks are based on the idea of misdirection. The performer grabs your attention with talking, hand movements, explosions, or other distraction, while all the time they are really pulling that spastic bird out of their jacket.

Sometimes we can feel like that in our spiritual life. We’re so focused on such-and-such particular issue (finances, what Sister Frustrating said to us on Sunday) that we miss what God is really doing. Then when the real crisis comes, we’re not ready for it.

SIGH. ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER STORM

Everyone knows the story in today’s chapter: Jesus and the mighty disciples are traversing the sea, a storm blows up, and the disciples bravely commit themselves the manly art of panic. They go to get to Jesus, who’s taking a siesta. We can almost see him roll his eyes, get out of bed, rebuke the waves (and the disciples), and head back to his bunk. The disciples are understandably in awe.

Fast forward to Jesus’ last night with his disciples. They go to the Garden of Gethsemane and Jesus goes off to pray. He comes back to find his disciples resting their eyes, he wakes them, asks them to pray. He goes again to pray, comes back, and again find his trusty helpers dreaming away.

WHICH STORM DO YOU SEE?

See the irony? The disciples were panic-stricken when they saw their outward circumstances; they were in physical danger and were afraid, but Jesus was calmly sleeping through it all. But when the real crisis moment came, when Jesus was in his desperate hour of need, the disciples slept away, oblivious to the momentous occasion around them.

We can often fall victim to the same thing. When we’re in an immediate physical crisis, we panic and pray our hearts out for deliverance (and God often comes to our rescue). But we grow complacent when things are apparently going well, and don’t heed the warning signs and exhortations of Scripture to pray. Because we can’t see the spiritual realities, we may miss the important moments of life. We need to be on our guard and pray that God will give us the eyes to see what our real priorities should be.

Where is your focus today?

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