Focus is the new superpower of the 2020s
In the last 15 years, as people have adopted the use of smart phones, we claim to be more connected than ever. It’s easy to have numerous channels of information coming in from various social media apps like facebook, instagram, twitter, snapchat, etc. It seems like there are also endless forms of communication with texting, groupme, messenger, slack and others. And for some of us older folks, there is still email, voice messages, and maybe even the occasional phone call. There are countless ways to receive news, to the point that it seems like it is nearly impossible to escape every single detail of what is going on throughout the world.
It turns out that we are inundated with so much information and communication that after awhile it just turns into background noise and a time waster. If I’m honest, I’ve even found myself occasionally mindlessly flipping through silly videos on TikTok or reels, thinking that it only takes 30 seconds to watch one of those videos and before I know it I’ve lost 15 minutes just scanning video after video that has nothing to do with anything.
Many of us pride ourselves on being able to multitask. Often we do five or six things at the same time so that we are ‘more productive’ and not wasting time. We claim to be so focused that we can handle multiple things at once and still get it all done. However, when we are not actually focused on the task at hand, are we really being productive at all? Are we really putting forth the effort that we should? Are we really finishing the task at hand faster? Are we being fruitful?
Life seems to pass by so quickly, that none of us want to miss out on any of it. We pack our schedules so full from morning to night, seven days a week, so that we never have to say “no” to another task at work, another volunteer activity, an event that our kids want to be involved with, or hanging out with friends. We rush from one thing to the next, sometimes only being partially present mentally because we are thinking of the rest of the things that need to be taken care of that day.
When we take time to stop and look at how Jesus lived his life, it can be a real wake up call. Jesus often took time to seek solitude. When He was present among the crowds, He was totally focused. Then, He would retreat to be with His twelve or sometimes to be by Himself. He often hit the reset button by taking time to pray in isolation. He needed to be totally focused on His Father, so that He could clearly hear the plan and be more fruitful.
Jesus knew His time was very limited, so to stay focused, He stopped, rested, and spent time with His Father in prayer. I need to pay much better attention to this example and learn how to slow down and focus. I need to spend more time in prayer; then just stop and listen. I need to be more like Jesus, so that I can produce much fruit.
Daily Reading: Focus is the New Super Power of the 2020s
John 15: 1-5