CCOG Newsletter

Weekly Updates

Reflections from Pastor Jennifer

Pray for the men in your lives. Men have a unique calling that was given to them by God. We learned through Scripture that their role in the family is somewhat different than we had once considered, so they need the help of the Holy Spirit to live it out. As men daily "stick their necks out" on behalf of their families, we surround them in prayer and encouragement. Men, you matter to God!

Keys to Keeping Your Focus

Like any new habit, taking time to study God’s Word will take a purposeful effort. At first, it can be a struggle to spend even a few minutes with God each day, and in the midst of a busy schedule, adding another thing to the list may not seem easy. But it is most definitely worth it!

I also believe the enemy fights us hard in this area. Satan knows how powerful God’s Word is, and he knows what it will accomplish in our lives. When I first began to make it a priority in my life, it seemed like I was faced with constant distractions. Things would come up to prevent me from spending time with God. Or I would begin my time, then lose focus or start to fall asleep.

Again, it comes down to treating our time in the Word as a vital necessity and choosing to do whatever it takes to make it a priority. So, here are just a few tips I have learned over the years to help me stay focused.

1. Make an Appointment with God

Choose to treat your time with God like you would any other appointment and work your schedule around that time.

I can still remember the early years when my kids were young and living at home. At first, they were a bit frustrated when I would go to my room and study the Word. They were used to me always being available. But, little by little, they saw the positive changes in my life—I was nicer, more loving and generally a better mother. In fact, it became our joke. When I was having bad day and being grumpy with everyone, they would tease me and say, “Mom, go to your room!”

God used this to teach my children (and me) a valuable lesson—that our time in His Word is where transformation begins. Putting God first is the best thing for you and the people you love!

2. Eliminate Any Potential Distractions

As much as possible, eliminate anything that will distract you. This can include things like turning off the TV or silencing your phone. If someone is calling and you know it can wait, choose to call them later when you are free.

3. Pick a Time When You’re at Your Best

As I’ve mentioned, choose a time when you will be most alert and able to focus. For many people, studying God’s Word works best in the morning because they are rested and fresh. However, if you’re a night person and concentrate better at the end of the day, then set your routine accordingly.

4. Keep a Notebook Handy

During my study time, I’ll occasionally get a good idea for a book I’m writing or remember something I have to do. In the past I would let that distract me, and I would stop what I was doing to go take care of it. Now I keep a notebook nearby to jot these things down to do later. I encourage you to do the same. When things pop into your mind, make a note on paper or in your phone, then choose to follow up when you’re finished.

5. A Little Is Better Than Nothing

When “life happens” and you don’t have as much time as you normally would, it’s still good to use the time you do have. There have been days when I have taken just 10 minutes to sit quietly with God. I’ll say, “Lord, this day didn’t go as I planned, but I want to at least check in with You. I love You and I know that I can’t do anything without You.” I’ll then meditate on a Scripture or sing a song of worship.

The enemy will try and make us feel guilty for not doing more. But remember, we don’t spend time with God to earn His love or approval. We do it because we love Him and can’t live without Him!

6. You’re Never Too Busy

Several years ago, my then 10-year-old granddaughter came to me and said, “Grandma, I want you to tell me how to spend more time with God because I’m so busy.” I thought that was cute. I thought, Honey, if you think you’re busy now, you just wait!

All of us have busy lives, and the enemy will use this busyness to distract us from our time in God’s Word. However, the busier we are and the more we have to do, the more time we need with God. He is our strength!

I will tell you what I told my granddaughter that day: Just start somewhere. If you’re schedule looks too busy to add one more thing, don’t let it stop you. Take what time you have—even if it’s just 15 minutes—and build from there.

As you do—as you take these steps to put His Word first—God will honor your efforts and show up in your life in ways you never imagined.

Pray: “God, I want to bear good fruit in my life, and I need Your help in planning and following through to simply meet with You. Help me not to get distracted by time wasters that get me off track and frustrate me. Even on my busiest days, help me to treat my time with You as a vital appointment that I just can’t miss. In Jesus’ name, amen.”

I Think I'm About To Break // Managing Meltdowns Part. 1 // Dr. Dharius Daniels