In Matthew 6:24, Jesus tells his audience “No one can serve two masters: for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.” While preparing for this devotional, I started to think about various types of masters. Then, I’d switch to thinking about devotion verses regarding despising. For a while I was stuck on the verb “serving.” In frustration, I walked away from writing to complete a chore. Returning to the devotional, I re-read the verse silently, then exclaimed out loud, “It’s all about focus!”
For several years, Ben and I, along with our girls, would spend the Thanksgiving holiday in West Texas. Many friends and family members would gather at my grandfather’s ranch, Chimney Hill. The men would hunt deer, the women would catch up with one another while taking turns in the kitchen, and the kids would head outdoors for the annual climbing of Big Momma.
Big Momma was the eastern end of the caliche embankment that surrounded the area where all would gather on Saturday for target shooting. To hear the kids talk, only Mount Everest rivaled Big Momma in height and difficulty of conquering. Strategy sessions took place every evening after dinner. After much brainstorming, drawing of diagrams, and demonstrations of various approaches (running, walking briskly then running, etc.), fresh attempts to summit Big Momma would be scheduled for the next day.
On Saturday, before target shooting, everyone gathered at the base of Big Momma to cheer on the mighty climbers. One by one, attempts were made to reach the top. Some attempts failed immediately. Other attempts appeared to be on the road to success, only to end in the agony of defeat. When success was finally achieved by one of the younger climbers, spectators and climbers celebrated as if all had reached the top of the world. The climber was finally asked the secret to her success. “All I thought about was getting to the top.” She was focused on her goal.
So many things compete for our time, attention, and resources. As a result, we try to multitask each of those areas. We may think ourselves successful until we encounter our own Big Momma. When we follow the advice offered in the verse above and focus on God, we can experience daily celebrations as we reach the top of our daily challenges. What will you choose to be your focus this day?