Monday, October 21, 2019

Overlooking What's Important

Sometimes we can be so focus on the target—on money, goals, successes, achievements, accomplishments—that we overlook what’s really important. Sometimes our eyes are so fixed on the future—on our task lists, getting things done, getting that job, finishing that degree, getting to retirement, finishing that project—that we miss out on all the goodness hovering around us.

I love this picture. It’s funny, but it’s also illuminating. It reminds me of the need to slow down, look around, and pay attention. Our sights can so easily be fixed on the wrong things that we fail to see the beauty in our midst. It happens to all of us.

Maybe we’re so focused on providing for our family, that we waste the fleeting time we have with our kids. Maybe we’re delaying our passions and callings—whether it’s volunteering or traveling, serving or starting that new adventure, adopting that kid or taking that risk—for another season of life when we have more time, energy, and resources.

We look to the future and miss out on the present. We worry about things that may or may not happen, and leave ourselves too exhausted or anxious to be fully present in this moment.

And that’s why there’s so much wisdom in the rituals of Leviticus—because we need built-in rhythms that ground us in the beauty and goodness of God’s presence here and now. We need practices that allow us to recognize and remember what’s really important. We need routines that help us notice God, one another, and our world.

And that’s why scripture—both Old Testament and New—is so adamant about the significance of Sabbath. Sabbath gets us back on track. Sabbath realigns us with what’s important. Sabbath reminds us that there is a God, and we are not Him. Sabbath is a bold declaration that the work is done, even if it’s not. And Sabbath allows us to pause, look around, and notice the beauty and goodness of God that we too often miss when we are immersed in the world of productivity and success.

So, let’s not allow the allure of the future—success, achievement, money, and goals—to distract us from the goodness and godliness of the moment. Let’s be faithfully present each and every day, awake and alive to an awareness of God in the moment.

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