Recently I heard a most profound statement. While out blueberry picking, the farmer handed me a bucket and waved me off down the trail, pointing out beyond where I stood. He told me where the best picking was. He closed with “And don’t get distracted on the way.” Meaning, you’ll see berries, but if you want the BEST, and lots of them–keep going–stay focused!
It was true. As I walked the dusty aisles between the mounded rows of bushes, yes, there were beautiful blueberries scattered here and there. But as I took a closer look, they had been picked over. I could tell other folks stopped here, at the very beginning of the field and picked. So did the next picker and the next. They didn’t journey out, they stopped at the first sight of berries. I would venture to say, some may have grown frustrated, thinking, the berries weren’t ripe yet (since primarily only green berries were left where they stood) and not going forth caused their perspective of the field to be lacking.
As I picked handfuls of plump berries (at the other end of the field) I thought about how true his statement was, “And don’t get distracted on the way.” We can apply this in our daily lives. How often are we venturing along and “Oh, looky there – ‘shiny.’”
Before we know it, we have dropped our (metaphorical) roadmap and we are all over the place. Distraction keeps us swerving and from the best!
King Solomon, the wisest biblical guy wrote: “Look straight ahead and fix your eyes on what lies before you. Mark out a straight path for your feet; stay on the safe path” (Proverbs 4:25-26, NLT). What wonderful imagery. The idea being conveyed is someone who studies what is ahead. It isn’t a quick glance; it is a taking pause and looking intently as to squint (“fix your eyes”). Once understanding what is ahead, the plan is weighed out and the best route is calculated (“mark out a straight path”). Solomon goes on to say, “Don’t get sidetracked” (swerve to the right or to the left) – distracted.
The Pastor of the book of Hebrews wrote: “…let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith” (12:1b-2, NLT). THIS is our specifically designed “fix your eyes – mark out a straight path” plan.
Peter too adds with strong encouragement, “Discipline yourselves, keep alert” (1 Peter 5:8a). Folks there is a “roaring lion” out there ready, waiting to destroy your “everything.”
Don’t get distracted.
What is it that distracts us most? What distracts us the quickest? Do we too stop and begin picking and attempting to fill our bucket, all the while there is abundance further out in the field?
Point to ponder.
Look straight ahead, fix your eyes, mark out the straight path. Jesus.
In Him, DeDe (“Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love & good deeds” – Hebrews 10:24).