When my youngest was small, he carried a little khaki satchel filled with legos. It was his prized possession, those small plastic pieces. He couldn’t bare the thought of being apart from them too long, lest a building opportunity arise!
The emphasis of his young years revolved around lego sets, mini figures and the like. Maybe other mamas can relate.
As I consider the emphasis of those early years, I am convicted to consider my own emphasis.
What is it in my life that I place the most emphasis?
Emphasis is defined as having special importance, value or the prominence given to something. So what is it that I give the most prominence to?
Obviously I would hope that the emphasis of my life is on the Lord, on His word, on walking with Him. But is it?
- Does the time I spend in God’s Word outweigh the total time I spend scrolling on my phone in a day?
- Do my thoughts gravitate back to the Word of God or do they circle the wagons of worry and anxiety?
- Is the reflection of my heart more like Jesus, gracious, loving, truthful and excellent; or more like the world, fearful, controlling, anxious and comparative?
Colossians 1: 18 confirms that Jesus is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything He might be preeminent.
So how do we, fallen and distracted people, choose to make Him preeminent in our lives? How do we place the emphasis of our life on what we really want (need) it to be, Jesus alone?
Just a few verses previously, Paul gives us the outline as he prays it over the believers in Colossae in verses 9-12 for choosing the right emphasis.
- Be filled with the knowledge of His will. The only place to know God and the knowledge of His will is through His completed Word. If we begin there and spend our time reading and studying the truths and promises of the Word, our emphasis will begin to shift.
- Walk in a manner that is pleasing to the Lord. Our actions are either based in pleasing ourself or someone else. Often we seek to please other people more than we desire to please the Lord. Based on the truths I am reading in God’s Word, how can I walk in response to that today and thus bear much fruit?
- Increase in our knowledge of God. Again, the emphasis Paul makes is in knowing God. To know God we must know His Word, not just a Sunday-morning-preacher-talking-at-me kind of knowing. No this is an intimate first hand knowing of God that can only come through much accumulated time spent in the Word. In our increased knowing of God we will then be strengthened, as Paul prays, according to God’s glorious might to endure the hard trials and have patience with the difficult people.
- Finally we give thanks to the Father. If the weight and emphasis of our life is more on God and His Word then we will be more aware of the good gifts He has given and less aware of the comparison pull towards others. I have found when I start listing my gifts, the list begins to grow and the gifts become easier to recognize. In other words, giving thanks feed thanksgiving. Today, try naming ten gifts…the first few might be hard to think of, but by the 5th one they will flow. You might even end up with more than ten and the emphasis of your day will shift towards the Gift Giver in a beautiful way.
Maybe a week of tending our days like this and we will begin to see the importance of choosing the right emphasis in our lives; as we seek to hold the Lord near in the satchel of our heart, like a certain little guy and his legos.
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