HOW TO AVOID DISTRACTIONS AS A CHRISTIAN

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As Christians, being distracted from the solid foundation which is Christ can lead to a great disaster during the storm of life. As Christians, we believe that God is the captain of our ship. Once you start losing sight off your captain, then it mean you want to start steering your ship. This will surely lead you towards the wrong direction. Sailing towards the wrong direction will lead you towards sin.

Your captain offered to direct you and support you, but instead of concentrating on Him, you began focusing on the big waves and the other sailors around you. Losing sight of your captain will surely get you worried during the storm of life. The though “I’m in this alone” will make your ship capsid.

With the advance in technology, it has become easier to separate oneself from God. Most Christian think you can only be distracted from God through sin, but that’s not always the reason. Other reason can be as a result of being engaged with life activities like, job, money, recreation, relationships, cell phones, TV, and more.

Sometimes our electronics overwhelm us all day, and we only remember God right before we go to sleep with a fast 20 seconds prayer, this shouldn’t be the case. When we allow other issues of life to fill our lives, we tend to be prone to wander away from God. Just have your eyes fixed on the captain and determine within you that wherever he leads you’ll go. The devil always try his best to distract us, because he knows God has a lot of goodies loaded for us.

The Bible teaches in James 4:8, “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.” Often people pray, but they get overwhelmed with distractions of feelings that their prayers won’t be answered. My advice for you as a Christian is to remain focused on the Commander.

Make prayer an habit. You really do not need to go on your knee before you pray. You can pray while doing your morning exercise, you can even whisper prayers to God on your way to office – God is everywhere. He will guide you right and never lead you astray. If you persevere in prayer, He will answer at the appropriate time.

Distraction is a frequent reminder of our frailties and limitations that, indeed, we are not God. The consequence of being distracted from God humbles us and forces us to seek God ‘s help. God is not as worried about our failure but how fast we are to run back to the cross whenever we fall. Remember how he allowed enemies in Jerusalem to harass Nehemiah and his wall-makers, (Nehemiah chapter 4). God allows us to inefficiently fight distraction to build our faith in Him. 

The Bible teaches in Ephesians 5:20 that“Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;”

Having a prayer corner is also a good idea. This prayer corner will serve as your “war room” Whenever you want to go deep in prayer, a “prayer corner or secret place” is a great way to avoid distractions. The idea is to have just a silent place to communicate with God. Doing so reduces your chances of being distracted.

Other ways to avoid distractions include:

Making it a priority: you ‘re most likely to stick to something if it’s important to you. Deciding to pray shows that God is important to you.

Setting a time: Once you’ve decided to make God a priority, the next thing you’ve got to do is set a time when you’re shutting out the world and focusing on your Heavenly Father. Spontaneous prayer is great, but it shouldn’t take the place of deliberate prayer.

Putting your phone in silent mode: these days, phones are our greatest distractions, so trying to pray while your phone is close to you can be a great distraction when it rings. Why not write out your prayer point on paper? Why not have your bible with you instead of reading from your phone? Having it on your phone can get you distracted – a chat or text can come in when glancing through the phone alas, getting you distracted.

Godliness is an important aspect of Christianity, and we can only walk with Him through faith. Christians often want to feel closer to God and focus all their attention and love towards Him, but in today’s world of distractions and short attention spans, it is easier to said than done. It can often be difficult to get back from those distractions to our place of spirituality and belief!

What triggers spiritual distraction?

The fundamental shift in focus disturbs us in several ways. We find our propensity to be diverted from the most important to the less important alas, having a detrimental impact on our relationships and obligations to God. We are distractible at the deepest level because of our broken, selfish nature; we have evil within.

Please don’t get me wrong – let me make more emphasis that “not all our problems are as a result of distraction” Some are simply the result of the infecting creation of futility (Romans 8:20-23). This futility can infect our life as well as our environments. We all are prone to distraction (in a way or the other). Some are resistant to distraction than others because of factors such as ADHD and other mental or physical diseases.

In most cases, all of these variables make it almost impossible to conclude rashly that being a Christian makes you negative to distractions. We live in a busy world that provides us with constant distractions from our faith. As we are distracted as Christian from our faith, we become separated from God. Have you ever seen any passenger in a cab that wishes to board a cab of a driver who gets easily distracted?

Here are other common trigger of spiritual distractions:

The Media

Perhaps this is the primary distraction and the most difficult thing to ignore and control because it’s everywhere. We receive magazines and newspapers in our mailboxes; advertisements on television, and internet (which is right on our cell phones) – all these can be a great distraction causing us to turn our attention away from God.

“And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her” Luke 10:41-42.

I am not saying the media is bad or you should stay off it totally but all I am trying to advice is for you to limit the amount of time you spend with your greatest distraction, whether it’s TV, newspapers, video games, or your mobile phone or computer. We can’t remove all media out of our lives completely, but we can control how much time spent on them, in other to have more time for God!

Prayer and songs of praises gives you more vitality and energy than seeing worldly movies or music on television.

Materialism

This is also a difficult distraction because the world is now so mundane. All we see is about getting the new gadget or product, and that allure is often difficult to resist. If we feel too driven by consumerism, we need to take a deep breath and step back to ensure that we are not just driven by a competitive mentality or comparing ourselves to others.

I try to ask myself, every time I think I want a new product, if I really need it, or if it would be nice to have it. Could the value I think I will derive from it glorify God in me? “It’s hard, especially if you have kids; God obviously loves us, and He wants us to take care of our home. Kids tend to want all toys like other kids alas, they don’t always want to take
‘NO” for an answer. Make sure all the toys you buy for your kids are educative and not a hindrance to the spiritual welfare of your kids.

Worries

The environment, pandemic, disaster, poverty — there is a lot to worry about, and there are so much information out there that triggers fear. Rather than allowing the worries to consume and distract you; why not cast your burden on him? Pass your concerns onto Him and trust Him in His own time to find the answers.

These issues are far beyond our power; so why worry when you can pray? Worrying will only make us stressed, tired, and sad without resolving the exact problem but if our focus is on God, He will replace our worries with joy.

Ourselves

We ‘re human, and we tend to be highly self-centered. It is easy for us to lose sight of God on solving our problems. These makes us focus on our power and imaginations. When we get too focused on ourselves, we don’t concentrate on God anymore. However, He has built us to look after others than our real self. He wants us to care for each other and love Him too. Next time you ‘re in prayer, remember that you need to focus some of your time with God and don’t let self-love be your spiritual distraction.

Love and Lust 

Many tend to believe that desire and passion are just questions of puberty, but they are not. Love and lust are huge spiritual distractions, no matter how old or young you are. We often get to think of a crush before we think of God. In romantic lust, we find ourselves lost or disturbed by pornography. In our dating partner, we may even get lost to where we no longer focus on our faith, and we focus only on the other person. Breakups can be a huge distraction, too, as we plunge into 

Entertainment

We love to be entertained. Television, films, books all offer an escape from our everyday lives. There’s nothing that says we can’t provide ourselves with a little break from reality by being entertained, but when that entertainment becomes a spiritual distraction in the way of our faith then we must be careful. What is most important is what we need to prioritize. Do we have to go and see that movie or go to church? If we choose entrainment over God, then we gave in to our distractions.

Everything

Our world is one that promotes stuff. There seems to be a new gadget or product every month; we’re all told in our lives that we need it. To learn the difference between what we want and what we need is important. The things in life become far less distracting from our relationship with God when we hold our need versus want. Things are here for a short time in this life, but God is eternal, and our eternal life with Him needs to be our priority.

School & Work

We all need to go to school and plan our future. These are essential part of our lives, but we must also take care not to allow them to distract us from our faith. Please don’t get me wrong, faith is not giving us an excuse not to study. To avoid distractions caused by our studies, we need to manage our time better and find time for God. We must make sure we do what we need to do on time so that we can devote our time also for God. Some spiritual distractions are simply caused by poor management of time.

Service

Even serving God can be a distraction to the spirit. Yeah, we can work for Him, but sometimes in our desire to be good servants, we lose sight of God. Martha is one good example of this situation. She had become resentful that when Jesus came to visit them, she was busy making delicious meal to entertain Jesus. Most Christians are like sign boards leading people to Christ but not having time to be with Christ. What do I mean? Have you ever thought about sign boards? They will always direct people to locations but they won’t be on the location. When we do the work of God, it is necessary that we are also in tune with God.

Conclusion

The more you practice these things, the more seamlessly and effortlessly these things become a part of your life. They ‘re going to soak in your thinking, living and doing, and you’re going to find yourself walking with God far more frequently than you’ve ever been.

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