Sunday, January 02, 2011


These are a few of my favorite things.  It's not an exhaustive pile by any means, but given a few minutes to grab a few things that mean a lot to me, this is what it would look like.  I don't expect that it looks anything like your pile would look, and that's okay.  This is just a handful of things that I feel is an honest representation of my heart. The only problem with my pile of favorite things is that it's just that- a pile.  I look at the pile and, even though I'm pleased with what I have, I'm a little unsure about what exactly to do with it.  As a matter of fact, a few of my very favorite things are useless because they're in a pile.  It's all there at my disposal, with the ability and purpose to bring me joy, but because I piled it up, I can't fully enjoy the benefits of what I proclaim to be my favorite things.


Life, even when it's wonderful, is hard.   We have parceled out our hearts in so many good directions that we don't truly have enough left to focus our time, attention and thoughts on the things we love the most.  Often times, we find ourselves half-heartedly checking off our to-do lists while the real desires of our hearts gather dust on a shelf.  We have gotten so good at making promises we don't keep that we've lost credibility with ourselves.   We have trained ourselves into living with good intentions and bad integrity. As bad as it sounds, we've allowed our lives to become so completely full of good that they are desperately empty of great, all because we've forgotten one of the beautiful truths of Genesis:  

I ask you, friends:  Did God have the ability to perfect His creation in an instant?  Did He have the knowledge and preparation to create on the first day and rest for six? Could He, if He had so chosen, actually have created every fiber of our universe in the blink of a Holy eye?  As a matter of fact, considering His power and prowess, wasn't spending an entire day on each facet of creation a little overkill in the attention department?  
Yes.  Yes.  Yes.  And, yes.  God could have done all those things and more, but He didn't.  According to verse after verse in the first Book of the Bible, our Heavenly Father who fashioned us in His image, gave us a living example of the importance of FOCUS.  An example so creatively exquisite that even the lost can't help but wonder who He is thousands of years later.

FOCUS.  Allowing the good to garner some of your attention while reserving every fiber of your time, attention, talent and thoughts for the great.  FOCUS requires turning that lens in our heart until we can clearly see everything in the picture.  FOCUS, by mere definition, won't allow you to miss the great because you were distracted by the good.  FOCUS makes you concentrate your attention.  FOCUS, like it or not, makes you choose.

Take another gander at my pile and ponder at the things you might have missed the first time. 
See, beneath the good eyeshadow and beside the good popcorn and below the good lens lie the two GREAT covenants that will forever define my life and my legacy.  If I'm not careful, what the Book and the rings represent will stay in that pile of good things, never getting the CONCENTRATED attention they deserve.  If I'm not intentional, I can mosey my way through life by ingesting an occasional verse and giving my family a few casual experiences.  No matter what my day-planner or refrigerator looks like, that is NOT how I want to live my life or spend my heart, and thankfully, I don't have to.

Thankfully, I was made in the image of One who showed me how to FOCUS.
Thankfully, I'm surrounded by friends who remind me the importance of FOCUS.
Thankfully, occasional  and casual have an enemy named FOCUS.

I want to live everyday in that 'give it all you got' mentality, going the distance and then some for the ones I say I love. I want to look back one day and know that I didn't waste my life on the good while I let the great fade into the background. I want to draw a line in the sand between good and great and live my life on the right side.

90 Day Challenge.  90 days of concentrated attention.  90 days of FOCUS.


  1. Great read! Focus is something that I need more of! ;) I LOVE how your "pile" had the two most important covenants in your life. Awesome!

  2. That was truly awesome. As a photographer, you got my attention with the 2 pics ... and I love the concept. But as a Christian, you grabbed my heart. I want this to be a year that I focus on God; I don't want a big picture of Who God is, but I want to be intimately acquainted with the details of Who He's all about a Groom and His Bride -- beautifully intimate in detail and focus. Already -with just day 1 down- I've noticed things I have never focused on. So I think it might be about more than focus; it's also about letting GOD direct it...and what a journey that will be!

  3. I am loving this already! Sue, You have really touched my heart with this post!
    I too, agree with Everything Lisa said! I want this year to be a year where I focus on God! and become acquainted with the details of WHO he is! Lisa wrote exactly what I was thinking, better than I ever could!
    I am so ready for this journey!

  4. Love it! I agree, I tend to pile my most important things together with the good intention of focusing on them later. And they just never get the FOCUS that I desperately want to give them. I most often feel that if someone took a snapshot of my life it would be one huge blur (even if they used a snazzy new camera like yours). I want this year to have a different focus from all the others.

  5. Boom, a pile, good call. Focus is something to focus on right about now. I made a list of the top three things wrong with me one time and distraction made the list. It's a killer.

  6. Whew! What an awesome post and beautifully written! I love this SO much... "FOCUS requires turning that lens in our heart until we can clearly see everything in the picture. FOCUS, by mere definition, won't allow you to miss the great because you were distracted by the good. FOCUS makes you concentrate your attention. FOCUS, like it or not, makes you choose." I found you on Graceful Abandon and I will definitely be back! God has used your words to of encouragement to minister directly to my heart. I am also a stay-at-home, homeschool mom, so very lovely to meet you... I accept your 90 day challenge! Blessings!

  7. THIS was my favorite so far...alot of the good...a little of the great...I NEEd TO FOCUS on more of the great..even if it's just a little of it!


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