Thursday, January 17, 2019
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We were nearly 3,000 miles from home when my wife was hit by this agonizing attack of gallstones. The situation was so acute we had to get her to a hospital where it was quickly determined she was going to need surgery to remove the stones. From what we understood (and this is the old-school way of doing it) it could take six weeks for her to be able to travel back after the operation. Back home a cure would have meant this invasive incision. But God, of course, had this planned all the time. The hospital that friends directed us to just happened to have on its staff one of the premier laser surgeons in the country. Now, they're more common today, but not back then. He zapped those gallstones with a laser beam and they were history. My honey was good in just two days! A while ago, a friend of ours lost his glasses - for good. He had a laser procedure on his eyes - lasik surgery - and almost immediately his vision deficiencies have been corrected. Who needs glasses? Gallstones gone, vision corrected - with the power of a laser - with the power of focused light.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Laser Living."
No amount of diffused light could have shattered gallstones or reshaped a cornea. Diffused light isn't all that powerful. Neither is a diffused life. Focused light is amazingly powerful. So is a focused life. And if you want the rest of your years to be the best of your years, however many or few God gives you, you need to be thinking about laser living.
I'm grateful God gives us some pictures of what that looks like in His Word. One incident from the life of Jesus, recorded in our word for today from the Word of God, shows us three steps to a focused, high-impact life. As we come to Luke 4:42-44, we find Jesus has spent the entire previous day healing multitudes of sick people in Capernaum. And the next day, people from all around are bringing needy people to Him from all over. But the day takes a turn no one could have predicted.
The Bible says, "At daybreak Jesus went out to a solitary place. The people were looking for Him and when they came to where He was, they tried to keep Him from leaving them. But He said, 'I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns also, because that is why I was sent.' And He kept on preaching in the synagogues of Judea."
Jesus was surrounded by needs and demands, competing for His time and competing for His attention. You know that feeling? But notice what happened. He walked away from a lot of needs because He had to stay focused on what He called "why I was sent." He knew those needs were a noble detour from the mission He had to focus on; His "I must," as He called it. So He focused like a laser on the central mission God had given Him.
That's what you need to be doing. Here's how, based on what we've just seen Jesus do. First, you need to say "no" to some good things - things that someone should do, but not you.
There are things only you are supposed to do. And that's the second step in laser living - pour everything into a few things that God wants you to go for. And the third step is how you decide the first two. Take a timeout to hear from your Father, like Jesus did. Let Him give you His passion for His priorities for your living, for your giving, and for your energy. If you've been too spread out over too many things, you're probably not making a big difference in any of those things. What's diffused just doesn't make much impact.
It's time to step back and focus your life and your resources - not on many things, but on a few "I must" passions from God's heart to your heart. That's laser living; the power of focused energy. It's the road to what your heart's restless for - to make a far greater difference with the rest of your life than you have ever made before!