Summary: Week four in a four week series on the essentials for conquerors.
14, March 2004
Dakota Community Church
The Essential Characteristics of Conquerors
WEEK FOUR: FOCUS
The bride was very nervous. It was right before the wedding and she wasn’t sure she could even walk down aisle. So her father gave her some words of wisdom. He said to her.
“There are only three things you need to focus on. If you focus on these three things, you’ll be fine.
The first is walking down the aisle. Just focus on walking down the aisle of the church. I know it’s rather long, but just concentrate on that. Don’t get caught up with those on either side of the aisle. Just focus on getting to the end of the aisle.
Next, focus on the altar. It is your destination today. Make your way down the aisle to the altar. There you will stand before God with the man you love and will make vows to God and him. Focus on the altar –for the altar represents the love God has for you in Jesus Christ.
Lastly, focus on the hymn just before signing of the Register. In poetry and song, the hymn embodies God’s love for you in Christ, your love for your husband and his love for you.
So, to help you not be so nervous, focus on those three things.
Walking down the AISLE,
Standing before the ALTAR and
Listening to the HYMN.
The bride was very thankful to her Dad for his words of advice.
The family and friends gathered watched as she walked down the aisle. They saw the look of calm on her face.
But as she passed them, they began to chuckle quietly. For along with the look of calm, she was mumbling three words over and over again to help calm her nerves.
“Aisle, Altar, Hymn… Aisle, Altar, Hymn… Aisle, Altar, Hymn.”
Enforcing the Spiritual Victory you have received takes determined long-term focus.
You cannot be hit and miss on this.
What can we do to get and stay focused?
1. Take the time to focus.
Don’t allow busyness to rule over business.
- Set aside and jealously guard a focus time.
- This will of course be your devotional time.
- Try using a journal.
Daniel 6: 10
10 Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.
- Even though his life was on the line Daniel jealously guarded his focus time.
- My need to get alone to pray and the family response when I don’t.
Have you ever wondered why a pigeon walks so funny? According to an interesting article in the Detroit Free Press, a pigeon walks the way it does so it can see where it’s going. Because it can’t adjust its focus as it moves, the pigeon actually has to bring its head to a complete stop between steps in order to refocus. This is the way it walks: head forward, stop head back, and stop. Don’t laugh -- that’s how it goes!
In our spiritual walk with the Lord we have the same problem as the pigeon. We have a hard time seeing while we’re moving. We also need to stop between steps -- to refocus on where we are in relation to the World and the will of God. That’s not to say we have to stop and pray and meditate about every little decision in life. But certainly our walk with the Lord needs to have built into it a pattern of "stops," which enable us to see more clearly before moving on.
1 After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: 2 "Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them-to the Israelites. 3 I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. 4 Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates-all the Hittite country-to the Great Sea on the west. 5 No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you.
6 "Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. 7 Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."