God uses many ways to get our attention. We would be wise to pay attention to each one.
Eternal Perspectives by Sally Bair
The gale-force wind was howling like a banshee, to say nothing about the slippery roads. With snow spitting horizontally and waves frothing off Chequamegon Bay which earlier was ice-covered, the storm kept many of us inside. Such weather gets our attention.
Sometimes other things get our attention. An ache or pain can tell us something is wrong that may need medical care. A bout with shortness of breath or chronic cough may indicate a smoking habit gone too far. A feeling of panic or sudden lapse of memory may indicate we’re under too much stress. Our bodies and minds seem to know when to catch our attention so we’ll hopefully make healthful changes.
God gives us attention-getters, too. He knows us better than we know ourselves. “My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought … Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.” (Psalm 139:15-16) Because He knows our needs, He knows whether we need attention-getters that encourage us or warn us.
God’s Word and presence surround us with attention-getters. For instance, Matthew 5:44 tells us: “Love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you …” This is perhaps His hardest command, but one that offers freedom from anger and anxiety as well as the freedom of joy and peace.
Another attention-getter is to “… be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, ‘Be holy, for I am holy.’” (1 Peter 1:16) Being holy refers to being dedicated totally to God while being separated from sin in the world. We face temptations daily. We face evil often. But the Bible tells us that when we fail or don’t pay attention to God’s commands, He is greater than our imperfect hearts. Knowing Him well through His Word, and relying on the power of His Spirit to obey His attention-getters, will bring us—and keep us—in close contact with Him where we can receive His attention-getters of love, righteousness, peace and joy.
We may not have to face gale-force winds or other storms of nature, but we would be wise to take heed of God’s attention-getters.
Lord, thank You for Your attention-getters that come from Your abiding love. Keep us alert to follow Your perfect will so we won’t be blindsided by temptation. In Jesus’ name, amen.