There are times for each of us when we just lose sight of things in our lives - things which are more important than other things. In these times, what we do to regain focus is what will make all the difference. Wouldn't it be much easier to just remain focused? Of course, but it is hard to maintain focus - it requires us to take action when we might not feel like taking action, redirect our attention when we are becoming distracted, and dig into the Word of God when the answers just don't seem to come.
Stay focused; do not lose sight of mercy and truth; engrave them on a pendant, and hang it around your neck; meditate on them so they are written upon your heart. In this way, you will win the favor of God and others, and they will think well of you. (Proverbs 3:3-4 VOICE)
The basic thing I believe we need to see in our study today is this idea of being directed - one way or the other, the direction we choose is because either we are directed from some desire within, or we have a desire planted from another which motivates us to take some particular course of action. Where the desire originates from is probably the most important part of us taking any step of action, as we discussed yesterday. If the desire is from within and is selfishly based (to feed some craving or desire of our flesh), then we will be taking steps, but they may not be in the right direction.
To be focused is to be directed. In acting, actors and actresses assume a place on the stage. In the beginning, they are looking for the oversight of someone we call the director. They are very attentive to his words, requirements, and "advice". As they become more and more familiar with their roles, something happens - they begin to ad lib a little, thinking it "adds to" their role. As long as this doesn't veer too much from what the director wants to see, he may allow it. If the times comes where they get too much into this realm of ad lib, the director will stop the production and "re-direct" them.
Why does he do that? Isn't it because he has a story to tell and by remaining true to the script, the story will be told in the way the author intended? Now, in life, God has a story to tell through each of us - one he has authored and wants told pretty close to the original intention of the "script". We are more than actors and actresses on a stage, but think of life as a stage for a moment. As we receive our direction from God himself, we are to remain true to the script - following the lead he gives. Veering too far "off-script" is what gets us into the realm of needing to be "re-directed".
The "script" of life is filled with words and actions of mercy and grace. As long as we are remaining true to the script, our lives illustrate what the author intends through our lives. As soon as we get caught up in some self-directed "whim or fancy" which comes from our selfish motives, we drift into this place of "being off-script" (we are "filling in" with a whole lot of ad lib). The stage of our life is filled, but the quality of what is being shown to others is not at its optimum!
I think we get a little mis-directed on occasion - either because we are listening to some inner voice telling us there is a better way to live life, or because we are caught up in the misdirected "ad lib" of another's actions. Either way, we will hear the director of our lives (Jesus) tell us to stop and get redirected. In acting terms, it is when the director tells every one to "cut". It is understood that the actions come to a screeching halt when this word is spoken. Why? They all know they are about to receive some "direction" which will better tell the story.
Maybe we need to approach redirection in our lives a little more like that - knowing no redirection is meant to criticize or tear us down, but to help us remain "true to the story being told" through our lives. If we did, maybe we'd be more in tune with the "script" and less willing to accept "ad lib" in our lives. Just sayin!