I agreed to pick our son up from school. My husband was relieved not to have to get him, since he had an appointment that he’d had to rearrange several times before and he really didn’t want to have to do it again.
Our schedules are crazy these days, we have two children in two different schools, in opposite directions from each other, starting and getting out at different times. My husband is self-employed and hasn’t worked an eight-to-five job in over ten years (well actually I don’t think he’s ever worked just eight to five).
This means that every day, we have to discuss who’s picking up who when. It can be a little nuts! My husband has been a bit overwhelmed with work lately and I was glad I could make his life just a little bit easier.
I hopped in my car and headed down the road. It was just a regular old day.
While driving, I noticed a bug crawling on my side of the window. At first, I wasn’t concerned but then I began to think, “What if it starts flying around in the car or maybe even crawls on me! Yikes. I have to get it out of my car NOW!” So I tried to roll down my window to flick it out but it was raining and I didn’t want to get wet. I was so focused on trying to get the bug out of my car that I forgot about everything else, including the fact that I was driving a car. (Never a good thing - I’m sure you can see where this is going)
The jolt, as my car hit the curb, brought me back to reality! Oh no! How could I have been so stupid?!
There was a very discernible listing to my right side and I could feel the kerthump, kerthump of my tire as it hobbled down the street. I pulled off to the side of the road, put my head on the steering wheel and gave myself a verbal lashing. “Really, Kristi, a bug! You just HAD to get a tiny little bug out of your car!!!”
Then I realized I had to call my husband. . . Can I just say, “UGH!”
Do I really have to tell him what I did, I wondered. I picked up my phone, tried to act nonchalant and said as calmly as if I was calling to tell him I would pick up his dry cleaning, “Honey, I’ve got a flat tire.” (Hoping he wouldn’t ask any further questions.)
“What! How did you get a flat tire???” (Okay, that wasn’t going to work, I guess I’ll just have to come clean. Oh, brother!)
“Well, you see there was this BUG . . .“
Why do I do stupid things like that? Why do I allow a little thing like a bug to distract me? Even though it started out as a small little distraction, the repercussions of my inattentiveness were not simple by any shape of the imagination (or cheap I might add).
I’ve noticed that it doesn’t take much in my spiritual life, either to get me distracted with the temporary instead of the eternal. Doubt. . . Busyness . . . Discouragement. . . Worry. . . Control. . . Self-preservation. Even good things like . . . Family. . . Ministry. . . Friendships . . .
And I hear my Heavenly Father gently saying to me, “Why do you allow such a small insignificant thing like busyness to distract you from Me?”
The repercussions of my lack of spiritual focus can be monumental as well! My choices can cause a fellow believer to become disillusioned in their faith and walk away. They can cause my heart to turn away from God. They can be very costly choices that I so quickly make without thinking of who will be hurt or how they will affect me and the ones I love.
But I’m encouraged by the words of Paul in Philippians, Yet, my brothers, I do not consider myself to have “arrived”, spiritually, nor do I consider myself already perfect. But I keep going on, grasping ever more firmly that purpose for which Christ grasped me. Brothers, I do not consider myself to have fully grasped it even now. But I do concentrate on this; I leave the past behind and with hands outstretched to whatever lies ahead I go straight for the goal – my reward the honor of being called by God in Christ. Philippians 3:12-14 (Phillips)
It’s never too late for me to throw off past mistakes and “keep going on, grasping ever more firmly that purpose for which Christ grasped me.” And it isn’t for you either.
These verses give me hope that through His strength I can put that “bug” behind me, realign my focus and be even that more on guard for those things that tempt me to shift me eyes from my true journey.
What about you, my friend, do you have a “bug” in your life that has derailed you and caused you to lose your focus? Remember, it’s never too late to turn back to your forgiving Savior and “grasp the purpose for which Christ has grasped you!”