The focus of many of the conversations in our house has been the Olympic performances. How do athletes tuck their bodies to spin and flip off mats and platforms so skillfully? My brain would be scrambled. How do they run fast and make it look so easy? I’m out of breath just thinking about it.
The athletes’ reactions to their performances are captured on camera for the world—from the exuberation of success to the heartbreak of disappointment. From the record breaking performances of amazing speed to the dropped baton of a missed handoff, we witness the dramatic emotions of competition.
During the post performance interviews, many athletes acknowledged their Christian faith. It is inspiring hearing them say their worth goes beyond their performance and that they want to give glory to God. Those are good lessons for us all.
No matter what the talent is, the person has several qualities that enabled them to press on. Among those qualities are determination and focus.
Determination is the firm intention to achieve a desired goal. It is the passion to keep going when you want to quit. Watching the Olympics we see the determination in the eyes of the athletes. Determination started long before we saw the race with the dream, desire and training to press on toward the goal. It takes a lot of time to excel at skills.
Focus is the point of concentration that decides the direction. Without focus, the athletes would not know how to train. A sprinter trains differently than a distance runner. Each trains hard, but has a certain focus for their goal. The loss of focus in a split second can change the outcome from success to disaster.
The apostle Paul taught about determination and focus for the Christian life in Philippians 3:12-14.
“Not that I have already attained this—that is, I have not already been perfected—but I strive to lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus also laid hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself to have attained this. Instead I am single-minded: Forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out for the things that are ahead, with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
When I read that passage, I am encouraged to press on with determination and focus when I feel like quitting. Faith becomes a focal point for going forward when things get tough. These verses redirect me to keep my eyes on the calling of God.
[bctt tweet=”Faith is an important part of focus.” username=”nancykaygrace”]
Faith anchors us to the greater purpose of living for the Lord, regardless of what we do in our everyday lives.
August brings a lot transitions. The new school year brings many challenges for learning unfamiliar skills. New schedules usher in structure to daily life. Some folks are relocating. Some are retiring.
Whatever your situation, I pray that you will have the determination and focus to go forward through the transitions. Learn from the past struggles and press on. Reach for the things that are ahead as you live for the Lord.
Let these words for Philippians 1:6 encourage your determination and focus.
…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Be encouraged, my friend.