We prayed for something. We sought God for His will. When He answered our prayers, we jumped high in glee. We became too busy and preoccupied on what to do next and how to get things done that we somehow forgot why we earnestly sought God for that thing. Somehow, the things turned from God + Me + His calling for my life to Me + World + What I could get from this answered prayer. Thus, we may not notice it that we’re slowly losing sight of Jesus along the way.
In Luke 2:40 – 52, it tells of the time when Jesus, Mary and Joseph went to Jerusalem to celebrate the feast of the Passover there. Mary and Joseph were so busy and preoccupied with the religious rituals that they didn’t even notice that Jesus was no longer with them. It took them 3 days to find out that Jesus was no longer with them.
I’ve read this story many times before and heard of it from priests and preachers time and time again, but I would honestly say that I always miss the mark of the essence of this story. I just see it as some carelessness in the side of Mary and Joseph. At one point in my youth while reading this part of the Bible, I even thought of Jesus as arrogant because of the way He answered His parents then when they found Him. It was during our coaching last Saturday when I finally got to understand the essence of this story – all thanks to the explanation of my coach 🙂
Just like Mary and Joseph, we may not also notice it but somehow, in the midst of the routines, rituals, highs and lows of this life, we fail to notice that we’re already losing the presence of Jesus as we’re too preoccupied with what to do with our lives or with the situations. An example given by my coach was with the Victory group. As a leader, we sometimes become too used to the routine of preparing for the VG (small group), reading the materials, etc., that there are times when we no longer seek Jesus on His word for the VG members for that particular session. We just read the materials and think as if it’s already enough as long as you can share what’s in that piece of paper. There are even times when we only prepare few minutes before the VG starts. Thus, in some way, we are losing the essence of Jesus in the VG session. Yes, we share about Him but that’s just mainly because He’s the default topic in every VG sharing.
Right now, I am in the season of preparing for the next episode in my life. I prayed to God, sought His will for this new season and He answered me. I was overwhelmed with happiness when I got a ‘yes’ for this particular thing I’ve been praying for and I just knew then that this is the direction that God wants me to go. But somewhere along the way, the worries of the unknown future is trying to cripple my faith and my excitement for this new season. The unnecessary burdens are also working its way to my heart and mind to sap my joy. I’ve been thinking too much about trivial things and worrying a lot about the responses of people that I fail to notice that I am already losing Jesus along the way.
And as always, God’s word for me today is just what I needed to refresh my mind and calibrate my thoughts.
Matthew 6:33-34 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
I might have been worrying too much about the not-so-important stuff that I am somehow losing the very essence of why I prayed for this particular thing to happen in my life. Some months ago, when I started to pray for this, I knew exactly why I wanted this thing so bad. It is for a greater purpose and a greater calling. It was clearly selfless that time. But now, it seemed that because of the clutters in my mind, the prayer is slowly turning into selfishness–always about me and not about HIM.
And all these I have to admit.
Thankfully, Jesus didn’t let go of my hand even if I seemed to be losing grasp of Him. He is still very patient in carrying me back to His path for me at times when I’ve been too engrossed with the sights I see on the left and the right that I didn’t notice I’m already turning to those directions. He gave me that verse in Matthew about worrying because He wanted me to just focus on Him as I step out in faith and embrace His calling for my life. This verse reminded me again that Jesus is the reason for this pursuit and not the people or the situation surrounding it. I know at times the enemy will still feed my mind with lies just to stop me from embracing this new season but I will just go back to this particular morning when Jesus reminded me again on why I prayed about it in the first place. I never want to lose sight of Him again.
If Jesus tells me to go, no matter how odd the circumstances may be, I WILL GO.