Pursuing A Focused Life – Phil. 3:12-14; Psalm 42
To break new grounds, apart from being ready to forget the past, as we learnt last week, we must be ready to live a focused life. Look at David: “My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast, I will sing and make music” (Psalm 57:7). Paul too was a focused man. He said, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward” (Phil. 3:14).
Thriving as God’s effective children includes an awareness of how he has created us and then zeroing in on his vision for us. Jeremiah 29:11 states very clearly that God has great plans for us which include a future filled with hope. Most often however, we don’t feel connected to that plan in our day-to-day lives and don’t feel we’re moving forward in it. God wants us confident in his unfolding plan as we serve him – a plan that has been in existence since the foundation of the world. Seeing it come to fruition takes patience, commitment and tenacity. This includes cultivating a growing sense of God’s leading and making deliberate daily choices to walk through life and ministry with focus.
What is a focused Life?
A focused life is a life moving toward the following four-fold emphasis:
• Living a life dedicated exclusively to carrying out God’s unique purposes for it (Phil. 3:12-14).
• Identifying the focal issues of life purpose, major role, effective methodology and ultimate contribution.
• Allowing an increasing prioritization of activities around the focal points.
• Seeing results in a satisfying life of being and doing
The Need to Please God
“This is what the Lord says: Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast about this: that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight, declares the Lord” (Jeremiah 9:23-24).
Pleasing God is one goal in pursuing a focused life. This ambition is meant to motivate us. Every child of God purpose is to be faithful and obedient as he orders his life around the vision of pleasing God in every sphere of his life and ministry. We do not live to be known, to receive affirming pats on the back or to obtain happiness or financial kickbacks. We live to move the heart of God through focusing our lives on the high goal of pleasing him in all we do.
Becoming students of what pleases results in knowing God better – his ways, his thoughts, his will and his purposes. Seeking to please God first and foremost results in a greater grasp on how to live for his glory.
Consider Jesus, our Lord and master. He lived a focused life by fulfilling his life assignment. John 17:4 declares: “I have brought you glory on earth by completing the assignment the work you gave me to do.” He was able to do this because he lived every single day pleasing the Father: “My food, said Jesus, is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work.”
Have you cultivated a true vision to live for? Can you write it down in a clear term? Do you make effort to clarify your vision regularly to be sure you are on track? Do you have a time management plan for remaining focused on your life purpose? These are issues we will be dealing with in the subsequent Sundays.
Join us for worship next Sunday at the Discovery Centre, opposite UI Second Gate, Ibadan. Every worship experience promises to be transforming at the Godly Brains International Christian Centre. We look forward to having you!