Are Distractions Keeping You From God?

It’s Lent.

The 40 days from Ash Wednesday to Easter.
(46 for the truly committed who don’t take Sundays off.)
Time to connect with God in a personal way and
consider what Christ’s gift of salvation really means.

I know, I know, Lent is largely a practice of liturgical denominations.

But!
What if we each took this Lenten season to
personally 
engage with God
asking for more of his presence?

That’s what I did.

Out of quiet desperation to hear from God
more often and more clearly,
I declared my Lenten season would be television free.

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This is BIG, Girlfriend.

I love television.
I spend hours and hours with television.
We’re tight and breaking up with it was not an easy decision.

NO weekly network shows.

NO Food Network cable

NO Netflix.

AARGH!

Knowing how it calls to me like a long lost friend in moments of
fatigue, boredom and procrastination,
I knew I had to CANCEL my subscription to Netflix.

End it.
B
e done.
No Access.
No more or British dramas, hilarious sitcoms, or mysterious whodunits.

Heaven help me!

The first couple days I thought, What was I thinking?
Why didn’t I choose something easier like
reading the Bible in its original language or
running a marathon or
solving world hunger?

Now a week into Lent, I know the answer.

God wants me to be hungry for him.
To have time and a quiet space to hear him.
When I long for a Netflix fix
(oh, and I do long for it),
God is calling me to long for him.

Instead of pondering and worrying about how fictitious characters
are going to get out of their jam or
what’s going to happen in the next episode,
God wants me to think about how he has rescued me!
To lean into his faithfulness for my future.

Instead of Just one more episode,
I have time to read,
call a friend,
sit reflectively,
exercise, (well, I hardly ever think that) but you get the idea.

More and more,
I am hearing God’s whisper traipse across the backyard of my brain.
I feel his presence as I read his words in my Bible.
I am filled with love and wonder and wisdom.

Steve Harmon says,
“Everyone wants to be transformed, but nobody wants to change.”

Loosely defined, Lent time of repentance, fasting and preparation for the coming of Easter.
It is a time of self-examination and reflection.
It’s the time to consider who God is, what he’s done, and how to respond to him.
It’s the golden opportunity to institute a change that could
revolutionize your thinking, your spirit and your life.

So, what if we all gave the rest of the 40-46 days of Lent to engage with God?
To truly reflect on the cost of our personal salvation?
To be thankful for our redemption?
To remember what it looks like to experience grace and pass it on?

It’s not too late to join in the Lenten season.

Ask God what you can
give up or start up or
sacrifice or incorporate
to experience his presence in a more powerful way.

Then, prepare to be amazed.

Scripture Refresher: Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4:8 (NIV)

Prayer: Oh God, I want to know you more. I want to hear your still small voice. I want to see you  move in my life and the lives of others.  Help me find you in this world that contends for my every minute and attention. I want to let go of that which keeps me distant and questioning.  Meet me in the space I create this Lenten season.  In Jesus’ Name. Amen.