While there have been many discerning scholars, famous philosophers and biblical prophets throughout history, I don’t think anyone could image how social media is influencing modern times. Whether its a pod cast, Instagram post, tweet or You Tube video going viral, every day is like a circus, filled with individuals seeking attention, fame and fortune. Becoming side tracked from what you need to get accomplished daily if you have a cellular device in your hand or pockets makes staying focused even harder. Just as curiosity led to Eve’s down fall in the Garden of Eden, Americans are amusing themselves toward a slow spiritual death through a state of constant distractions.
No soldier in active service gets entangled in the [ordinary business] affairs of civilian life; [he avoids them] so that he may please the one who enlisted him to serve, 2 Timothy 2:4.
The apostle Paul writes about daily distractions during the first century. The mentality necessary to avoid getting emotional caught up in the affairs of society requires military readiness taught in the armed forces. An active soldiers’ main concern is carrying out and fulfilling their commanding officers’ instructions. From a spiritual perspective, Paul is encouraging believers to focus on serving God. Romans 12:1 is symbolic of beginning and completing boot camp, pushing your body to its limits. As you dedicate your life to God, the Holy Spirit begins to reveal the Lord’s will for life which is phase two. The more focused your are on serving Jesus, the less concerned you will be with daily events beyond your control.
And if anyone competes as an athlete [in competitive games], he is not crowned [with the wreath of victory] unless he competes according to the rules. 6 The hard-working farmer [who labors to produce crops] ought to be the first to receive his share of the crops. 7 Think over the things I am saying [grasp their application], for the Lord will grant you insight and understanding in everything, 2 Timothy 2:5-7.
The apostle Paul finishes his illustration with an athlete and farmer. While different, the more each puts into their trade, the skies the limit. Sports is based upon determining who is the best through a series of competitions during a defined season. Meanwhile, farmers must work if they want food. If each treats their land like a prized possession, the outcome will likely be positive. If you reap what you sow is an accurate principle, then every individual has a choice, to seize each moment or waste your life away. Sure, deciphering what God’s will can take a life time, but if you develop the resolve to press on, the promise of 2 Timothy 2:7 can be a reality. As I struggle and wrestle with overcoming the bad news reported each day, join me in a venture to avoid becoming side tracked anymore.
by Jay Mankus