WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
MARCH 1, 2021
TOPIC: FOCUS ON YOUR MISSION
BY T. O. BANSO
“Because the Sovereign LORD helps me, I will not be dismayed. Therefore, I have set my face like a stone, determined to do his will. And I know that I will triumph” (Isaiah 50:7 New Living Translation).
To achieve any important mission, especially your destiny, focus is important. A simple analogy is going to the supermarket to buy some things. If you’re not well focused and disciplined, you may end up not buying the actual items that you went to the supermarket for or be distracted to buy, in addition, other things you didn’t budget for and may not need.
Jesus’ life and ministry teach us about focus. He was focused on His mission on earth. We must learn from Him. He did not allow any distraction from the religious’ leaders – the Pharisees, the Sadducees, the scribes. They were His greatest critics and detractors.
At a time, He was accused of casting out devils by Beelzebub (Matthew 12:24; Mark 3:22; Luke 11:15). But Jesus remained focused. In John 8:6, they tried to trap Jesus with a question on the woman caught in adultery but they couldn’t get Him. They told him Moses, in the law, commanded them that such a person should be stoned and asked for His opinion so as to have something they could use to accuse Him.
John 8:6b-11 says, “But Jesus stooped down and wrote on the ground with His finger, as though He did not hear. So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them, He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.’ And again He stooped down and wrote on the ground. Then those who heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning with the oldest even to the last. And Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. When Jesus had raised Himself up and saw no one but the woman, He said to her, ‘Woman, where are those accusers of yours? Has no one condemned you?’ She said, ‘No one, Lord.’ And Jesus said to her, ‘Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more’” (New King James Version).
In Mark 12:13-17, they tried to trap Him with a question on tax payment but they failed. He knew their hypocrisy that they only wanted to test Him; it was a trap set for Him to make Him say something they would use against Him. But it failed as Jesus continued to be focused on His mission. He refused to be drawn into any controversy on taxes. He gave them an appropriate answer. This story is also recorded in Matthew 22:15-22 and Luke 20:20-26.
Jesus’ unbroken focus on His mission is also shown in the incident in John 6:15. Some people wanted to come and take Jesus by force to make Him king after they had seen how He miraculously fed five thousand men with just five barley loaves and two small fish and twelve baskets of fragments of the five barley loaves were gathered thereafter.
When Jesus perceived this, He departed again to the mountain alone. He did that because He knew His mission. His kingdom was not of this world as He later told Pilate. “Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would fight, so that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here’” (John 18:36 New King James Version).
When Jesus was asked to intervene in the sharing of a family inheritance, He refused to get involved. “Then one from the crowd said to Him, ‘Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.’ But He said to him, ‘Man, who made Me a judge or an arbitrator over you?’ And He said to them, ‘Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses’” (Luke 12:13-15 New King James Version). Sharing family inheritance was not part of His mission on earth! He didn’t have an anointing for that!
You, too, must be focused if you’re going to make heaven and fulfill your mission on earth. “Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you” (Proverbs 4:25 New King James Version). Matthew 6:24 says no one serves two masters; he will either hate one and love the other or be loyal to one and despise the other. You are not to get involved in every project, cause, or mission. They could be good but not part of God’s mission for you.
Jesus said in Matthew 6:33 that His followers should seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all other things shall be added. You must focus on your mission on earth and not let anything derail you from its pursuit after discovering it. David said, “I have set the LORD always before me; because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved” (Psalm 16:8 New King James Version).
The prophet Isaiah said something similar: “Because the Sovereign LORD helps me, I will not be dismayed. Therefore, I have set my face like a stone, determined to do his will. And I know that I will triumph” (Isaiah 50:7 New Living Translation). Don’t go here and there; don’t wander away from your life’s mission. Set your face like a flint in its pursuit.
Jesus told Martha, the sister of Mary, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her’” (Luke 10:41-42 New King James Version). You should focus on what is needed or needful. Don’t lose focus on your mission. Don’t get distracted.
The servant of Abraham whom he sent to find a wife for his son refused to eat when he arrived in the house of the wife he had found, Rebekah until he had accomplished his mission. “Then supper was served. But Abraham’s servant said, ‘I don’t want to eat until I have told you why I have come.’ ‘All right,’ Laban said, ‘tell us your mission’” (Genesis 24:33 New Living Translation).
That was a focused man. He wasn’t a hungry man. He didn’t come there to eat but to take a wife for his master’s son. Someone else could have sat down eating and enjoying their hospitality as if that was his main reason for coming. Abraham’s servant continued to be focused after getting the consent of Rebekah’s family. The following morning he requested to be allowed to go with Rebekah, which the family agreed to after Rebekah had agreed. He didn’t waste time at all.
Nehemiah is another example of being focused on one’s mission. Sanballat and Geshem invited Nehemiah to a meeting, which was a trap, But Nehemiah was focused on his mission and didn’t honour their invitation. He answered them, “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work cease while I leave it and go down to you?” (Nehemiah 6:3 New King James Version). They sent the invitation to Nehemiah four times but he gave them the same reply. Be focused on your mission, If you’re not focused, all manners of things will distract you.
If you’re going to achieve anything significant in life, you will face distractions. Everybody faces them but not everybody yields to them. You must not yield to distractions. You must be focused. Focus on your life mission and every task before you.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto you today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and resurrected the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: In the name of Jesus, I will set my face like a stone and do Your will, Father. I destroy every scheme of Satan to distract me from my mission in life. I shall do the needful and not be worried and troubled about many things in Jesus’ name.
(For over 400 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit: www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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