Life Lessons, Word, Word, Truth, Life, Love

Enduring Focus

I ordered my usual Grande Skinny Vanilla Latte, set out my vast array of colored pens, opened my planner to the work section, took my usual plethora of vitamins & supplements, opened my laptop, worked a while, and had lunch with a coworker.

It was a typical Tuesday.

And then the room started spinning.

Colors faded in and out, stars danced at my temples, I couldn’t find the right words to say.

I get migraines. This was different.

I made an appointment with my doctor that afternoon. She was obviously worried. She ordered bloodwork.

She called the next afternoon and told me that my iron count was very low and that I have Iron-deficiency Anemia caused by a pre-cancerous condition.

No wonder I felt like death.

She prescribed an iron pill 3x daily and said to repeat the bloodwork in 2 weeks to mark my progress.

Did I mention I take a plethora of vitamins and supplements? A multi-vitamin with iron was one of those, but I had not been taking it lately, because it was at the house and not in my work bag.

I started thinking about this verse from my daily Bible reading:

Consider it a great joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you experience various trials, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.
James 1:2‭-‬4 CSB

(The Message version says “…so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.”)

So…tested & triumphed faith produces endurance. Full-grown endurance = being complete and lacking nothing.

As I drove home that afternoon, I began thinking over that verse: What do I lack? What am I deficient in?

Well physically right now I lack sufficient iron in my blood. It makes me weak, dizzy and exhausted.

My thought pattern traced the logic in the verse: I have to have faith in the doctor and trust she knows what’s best for me. I have to act on that faith by taking the iron pill 3x a day. I have to repeat the bloodwork in 2 weeks. For this to work I need to employ endurance. I have got to follow through with the plan the doctor gave me. Then my iron levels will not be deficient (lacking nothing).

As I was taking my iron pill tonight I felt that still, small voice of God prompting: What else? What do you lack spiritually and emotionally?

This took me down a path of asking myself, “What are my what else symptoms?”

So I made a list. Because listers gonna list.

What are some symptoms that tell me something is not right in me spiritually or emotionally:

  • Fear / Anxiety
  • Lack of focus
  • Frustration
  • Not finishing what I start

This lead me to ask myself the next question: What element do I lack that may be causing these symptoms?

I lack enduring focus.

I tend to just waltz through life following my own whims and desires. I need to start asking God what His plans are for me. I need to follow God consistently. I need enduring focus.

My friend Rebecca Carrell says:

“You won’t follow someone you don’t trust, and you can’t trust someone you don’t know, and you can’t know Christ apart from His Word.”

I need to be in the Word. Consistently.

To be healthy and balanced spiritually and emotionally, I need a steady diet of God’s Word. When I leave my Bible at home instead of in my work bag, it is easy for me to get out of the habit of my daily reading, and, just like with my lack of iron, symptoms arise.

Oh, I do well with supplementing my life with worship songs in the car, attending church meetings, having outings with friends, and spending time with my kids. But to function well, I need my time in the Word.

Young lions lack food and go hungry, but those who seek the Lord will not lack any good thing.
Psalms 34:10 CSB

I am at my best when I seek Him.

So here are some questions I’ll leave you to answer:

Are there “symptoms” that tell you something is not spiritually or emotionally right in your life?

What element is lacking that is causing these symptoms?

What have you left out lately that you used to be consistent with?

What are you gonna do about it?

Consider how much better your life will be if you just do the thing.

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