A 21 Day Spiritual Journey: Day 13

“The function of prayer is not to influence God, but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.” ― Søren Kierkegaard

“The function of prayer is not to influence God, but rather to change the nature of the one who prays.”
― Søren Kierkegaard

I lost my new boots! Just before what may be the coldest snowiest week in winter 2013 I have put my boots somewhere and I cannot, for the life of me, find them. To top it off they were a Christmas gift from my mother and now she is obsessing over the fact I’ve lost them.

It is truly amazing how little things can side track a whole day. Our momentary frustrations can easily dominate the psychological landscape, blotting out our view of God’s plans. I know if I am not careful I could lose valuable dream- reaching- time to what God calls the “little foxes”:

[Young Women of Jerusalem] Catch all the foxes, those little foxes, before they ruin the vineyard of love, for the grapevines are blossoming! Songs 2:5

When I get frustrated over something my knee-jerk reaction is to get angry and get- a- fixin’.  My emotions tend to blot out the logical side of me which would ask the questions: Is this immediately important? Do I need to be taking care of this? Is this something that needs to be dealt with now?

I am learning to catch the little foxes and stop them from stealing my time and energy. I’m accomplishing this  by stopping…breathing…asking the questions above…and planning from the answers to those questions rather than from my initial emotions.

Today’s quotes:

“To conquer frustration, one must remain intensely focused on the outcome, not the obstacles.” 
― T.F. Hodge

“It’s a lack of clarity that creates chaos and frustration. Those emotions are poison to any living goal.” 
― Steve Maraboli

“At times the whole world seems to be in conspiracy to importune you with emphatic trifles. Friend, client, child, sickness, fear, want, charity, all knock at once at thy closet door and say,—’Come out unto us.’ But keep thy state; come not into their confusion. The power men possess to annoy me I give them by a weak curiosity. No man can come near me but through my act.” 
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

What are the little foxes that are trying to distract you from your dreams?

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20 thoughts on “A 21 Day Spiritual Journey: Day 13

  1. The little foxes are my fears. I have to stop and say to myself, “Fear not for I am with you.” I also remind myself to be still and listen for His whisper, with God there is no fear.

  2. This is an excellent message, Pastor J–stirs me to be more mindful, keep track of the little foxes–thanks!! God bless you and the fam–love, sis Caddo

  3. Oh Jesus!!!

    Pastor J,

    I had my whole day thrown off trying to find a cable. I can’t leave without it, and I have no idea where it is… I told God that He knows where it is, so I will just relax and not worry about it. I chose instead to spend quality time with my family. Mind you, not finding the cable could have a little domino effect but I am resolved to let Him work it out. The little foxes can really wreck a vineyard!

    Very timely post. Thank you ever so much!

    Blessings,
    ann

    P.S. -It is about -19 outside. If I went outside without boots, my toes would freeze in about 20 seconds!

    • God has a way of finding things miraculously when we need them. I am also convinced He hides things to keep us on His schedule rather than ours. I found my boots on a shelf at church. Did you find your cable?

      • ” I am also convinced He hides things to keep us on His schedule rather than ours. ”
        Ha!!!

        I found the cable … an hour and a half after my deadline had passed. I later learned that it was so cold outside, the city had issued an alert, and that quite a few cars ended up with frozen washer fluid (mine included!) , and that the best thing I could have done was stay inside 🙂 How great is our God!

        Found the cable when He wanted me to find it. Had I fled in my haste, who knows what may have happened… How great is our God? I can’t find the words!

        Glad you found your boots 🙂 He knew where they were all along. Just as He knew my cable was in the car with the frozen washer fluid 🙂

        Blessings,
        ann

      • Interesting… Our times are indeed in His hands.

        We found out this morning it was worse than frozen washer fluid…It was a broken canister. Can you imagine driving in slush and snow with an empty canister? I am sooooo glad He kept me on His schedule!

        Blessings
        ann

  4. This one is for me! Some days I’m so all over the place, chasing those foxes. God bless you and thank you for helping us focus on Jesus and the outcome!

  5. Those ‘little foxes’ can really play havoc in a carefully planned day. In my ‘ministry years’ I had to keep constant guard, praying for wisdom and discernment. Thankfully, in my not-so-hectic years, the ‘little foxes’ are not so active, but they still need to be dealt with swiftly.

    Thanks for the reminder.

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