Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us, then, who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. Only let us live up to what we have already attained. Join together in following my example, brothers and sisters, and just as you have us as a model, keep your eyes on those who live as we do. Philippians 3:13-17 NIV
Lately, I’ve been feeling a little bombarded with the weight of all the negative things that are reported in the news. Part of the problem is–I’m listening to far more newscasts than I should. Normally, I see the early morning newscasts because I need to be aware of weather and traffic and in listening to this–I can’t ignore the sad events that are repeatedly reported.
Knowing as I do, how the enemy deceives people and confuses their minds, I should not be surprised at the number of people who commit random crimes and kill others with no thought as to how their acts will affect others. I don’t just mean how the killings affect immediate family and friends–I mean everyone who has a heart. And the killers–people who kill older people in their homes–are heartless; people who hit people with their cars and then dump the body–heartless; people who randomly shoot at others not caring who gets hit in the crossfire–heartless.
Sensitivity to all the negativity reminds me that I do indeed have a heart, but if I focus on all the negative stuff, my heart will too heavy to continue doing what may make a difference in the lives of others.
At some point, I’m sure others have felt the same way. How do we keep moving forward with all the tragedy that is constantly bombarding us? We stay focused on the things that matter. We cannot control people any more than God will–He gives us all freewill to make our own choices. Some choices people make are not good and some are even worse, but the choices we make–keeping our focus on hearing God and being obedient, can and will make a difference.
We must continue to encourage all to live according to God’s Word. We must continue spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ–no matter how heavy our hearts are and we must continue to love–even those who hate us because of our obedience to God. Our focus on doing the will of God is what matters and for that reason, we have to filter what we hear and deliberately choose to ignore all that will distract us from our purposes.
There is absolutely nothing we can do to change those things which have already happened, but we may make a difference in our present and future–for us and others. Let’s focus on the things of God and encourage others to live for Him.