The biggest impact of the coronavirus pandemic for those semi-sequestered in their homes is probably not the fear of contracting COVID-19, but the ever-present distraction of it.
Every day I wake up thinking about the affects this could have on my family and others. I check stats and national updates by the hour. Sundays I preach to a tiny camera lens to those huddled around technology devices and honor worship distancing.
These are different times and focus can easily blur amid the challenge of trying to know when this pandemic season will end and normalcy — even a new normalcy — will begin.
Interestingly, the distractions with which we struggle today are not new. In ancient times, Nehemiah addressed and resisted insurmountable distractions while seeking to fulfill the mission and plan of God.
Nehemiah — a visionary leader and man of God — left his life of service in Persia to return to his homeland and provide leadership for the rebuilding of a wall around Jerusalem, a wall destroyed more than a century earlier.
In Nehemiah 6, we are told the wall was almost complete except for the placement of doors within the gates — nearing the finish line, but not quite there.
Nehemiah’s enemies sent an invitation — a distraction — to Nehemiah: “Come and let us meet together at the plain of Ono” (Nehemiah 6:2 ESV).
The plain of Ono, about 25 miles northwest of Jerusalem, was not a far distance, but far enough from the project for Nehemiah’s enemies to take advantage.
Nehemiah’s RSVP? “I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and come down to you?” (Nehemiah 6:3 ESV).
Distraction is a Temptation
Distraction is the temptation to give the focus and energy needed for something highly important to something that is often quite insignificant.
When distractions present themselves (as they often do on a daily basis), are you tempted to respond? Nehemiah had convictional focus that refused distraction and compromise.
What are some of the common voices of distraction we hear and face today? Here are few suggestions:
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SOURCE: Christian Post, David H. McKinley