48.4 – Devotion

Athletes will tell you that it’s important to have the right focus. A basketball player must focus on the right spot while he’s shooting the ball, or else he might miss the hoop. A ballet dancer must focus on one spot while she’s turning, or else she’ll become dizzy and go the wrong way.

It’s easy for us to have the wrong focus as we live our lives. Jesus told three parables about people who had the wrong focus. In one parable, a priest and a Levite were so focused on themselves that they left a man lying on the road half-dead. In another, a Pharisee’s prayers were so focused on himself that he didn’t pray for mercy or realize that he really needed it. A man in a third parable was so focused on making himself rich that he spent all his time and energy doing things that don’t matter to God.

In all three parables, people had the wrong focus on themselves. It’s very easy for us to focus on making ourselves richer, smarter, more attractive, or more popular. None of that truly matters! It won’t please God, and it will all be gone when God calls us to heaven.

Our focus needs to be on God. God gives us abundant mercy and forgiveness, no matter what we’ve done. He gives us His love, which we can share with others. We can only experience true joy and glorify God when our focus is on Him!

  1. Where does God want us to focus? Is that easy or hard?
  2. Do your friends help you focus on God, or do they tempt you to have the wrong focus on yourself? How can you encourage your friends to have the right focus?
  3. What’s the difference between happiness and true joy? How can we experience true joy?

Let’s pray:

Dear God, we confess that we often have the wrong focus on ourselves. Help us to focus on You and what You have done for us. Thank You for giving us mercy, forgiveness, love, and joy. In Jesus’ name. Amen.