Today has not been the day I intended when I awoke at the crack of dawn to spend time with God.
Firstly, the ever-so-cute-but-ever-so-naughty dog escaped from the garden.
He returned an hour later.
I had actually just text a very-committed-to-my-dog-friend to request prayer on the issue, when his little, cheeky, happy face appeared at the back door.
Covered in mud and wagging his tail.
(Me and Becca really need to fix that hole in the fence!!!)
So, after the slightly-unproductive-start to the day I finally sat down to study.
I had great intentions.
The best intentions.
A big pile of books, and a giant mug of tea, and some fierce resolve.
But, my full of potential day became filled with distractions. Skype kept ringing. The dog kept fussing. My mind kept churning-a-million-and-one-irrelevant-to-essays-on-justice thoughts. My computer wanted to install new software.
At 2pm I gave up and had a nap.
I had 6000 words, a rough-around-the-edges essay structure and a fuzzy-tired-brain.
And I did not feel focused.
Unhelpful to the cause.
Consuming of our time.
Pulling on our thoughts.
My day only improved when my house-mate returned, took one look at me (bleary eyed and surrounded my books) and went to cook us dinner.
And make more tea.
And genuinely provide the practical solutions that I had completely-ignored in my distracted state.
Because so often, when we’re in a place of confusion we can’t see that God has already provided the practical answer.
The way to stand up.
To keep running.
And we need to step back, and breath, and laugh about the day, and think about what is important, and come back physically, emotionally and spiritually refreshed.
I am reminded of that old-ish song by Ginny Owens:
Turning molehills into mountains
Making big deals out of small ones
Bearing gifts as if they’re burdens
This is how it’s been
Till the day You pounded on my heart’s door
And shouted joyfully, ‘You’re not a slave anymore!’
You’re free to dance, forget about your two-left feet
You’re free to sing, your joyful noise is music to me
You’re free to love, ‘cos I’ve given you My love and it’s made you free.
And as I now return to my books, motivated by a change in my practical reality, spurred on by Earl Grey, good food and a huge bowl of custard, I am thankful for friends, and thankful to God.
Because even on busy-distracted-nothing-going-to-plan days, He has made me free.
And every little blessing, (including my wonderful-house-mate and my wonderful-bowl-of-custard and my random invites for shawarma) is another wonderful reminder to respond in overflowing-praise.
And that is the reality that re-focuses me from any distraction.