Monday, January 18, 2016

20160118 Pay Attention

Pay Attention

Matthew 13:3-9 He told many stories in the form of parables, such as this one: "Listen! A farmer went out to plant some seeds.  (4)  As he scattered them across his field, some seeds fell on a footpath, and the birds came and ate them.  (5)  Other seeds fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seeds sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow.  (6)  But the plants soon wilted under the hot sun, and since they didn't have deep roots, they died.  (7)  Other seeds fell among thorns that grew up and choked out the tender plants.  (8)  Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted!  (9)  Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand."

Earlier today I had a conversation with a representative from my mobile phone provider. She ended the call with this request, “Please don’t text and drive.” What she was telling me was, “When you’re driving pay attention to driving. Watch out for obstacles and other drivers. Obey the road signs. Be aware of what is going on around you. Don’t allow yourself to be distracted by your phone while you’re doing something as dangerous as driving.”

What does that have to do with our passage today? The words of Jesus are life. John 6:63.

The word translated in verse 3 as, “Listen” is often translated as “behold.” We are being called to pay attention to what is about to be said. Today we find ourselves easily distracted, by our own thoughts, by our gadgets, our schedules and a myriad of other things that vie for our attention.

Think about how often you don’t really hear what your spouse or co-worker is saying even though he or she is in the same room with you. I don’t know about you but that has caused some pretty serious contention for me at times. How much more important is it for us to hear what our Lord and Savior says to us?

Jesus ends this short parable with the same warning, “listen and understand.” He wanted His followers to really get what He was saying.

What distracts you? How often do you look at your phone in one day? Track it for a day and find out. I challenge you to set times for checking email and social media and only check them at those times. Have some times during your day that are “No Tech” times. Turn all the gadgets off and really listen and strive to understand your loved ones.

Father in heaven, give us ears to hear and hearts of understanding. Fill us with Your love for You and for our fellow man so we desire to really hear. In Jesus Name, AMEN!!!

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