2014 Word of the Year

2014 Word of the Year

It is the first day of a new year. A new year means new opportunities and perhaps a new focus. The word ‘focus’ has been at the forefront of my mind since October. According to Webster’s, the definition is “a point where rays of light meet after being bent by a lens, curved mirror; correct adjustment of the eye or lens to form a clear image, a center of activity or interest, to concentrate, to adjust the focus of.” In Scripture, the word for focus is “devote”, or “see to it”. For example, in the New Living Translation, I Timothy 4:13 says “Until I get there, focus on reading the Scriptures to the church, encouraging the believers and teaching them.” But in the New International Version, the verse says, “Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and teaching.” The following verse says, “Do not neglect your gift.” And so to focus on one thing, such as a goal, is to be devoted to the accomplishment of it and see to it that it is completed. Women are natural multi-taskers. We typically have many things to manage at one time. This is good in that the husband, kids, home, church, work responsibilities are being met. It is not good in that we can be easily distracted by all the demands around us making it difficult to complete any one task. Focus is needed, that is to devote ourselves to one thing at a time. “See to it that you complete the work you have received in the Lord.” (Colossians 4:17) What is the work of the moment? Be devoted to that one activity. What comes first, focus or desire which is passion? I believe they must work hand in hand in order for the goal to be accomplished. If you have focus and no passion, you are simply looking at what needs to be done. But if you add passion or desire, you will work to see the goal accomplished. If you have the desire without the focus, it is easy to become distracted by all the other things going on around you. The entire lens of your focus becomes blurred and nothing is accomplished. For example, this morning I was staring at a lamp across the room. I was focused on the lamp. The lamp has a purpose of providing light. We’ll call that the goal. However, the goal will not be accomplished unless there is desire, or passion, along with the focus. Being focused on the lamp directed my attention to that one thing. Everything else in the room was blurred in my peripheral vision. The detail of the lamp was sharp...

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