First, it is actually impossible, even for brilliant minds, to focus on two things at the same time, either we will focus on one and ignore the other or focus on the other and ignore the first. Sure, we can flip rapidly between two things but will handle them both poorly.
What is my one task? To get to know Jesus better and bond closer to him.
God wants to know, “How long will you hesitate between two ‘gods’ ? Either I am God or something else is god. I Kings 18:21” God wants ‘total surrender’ all the time, in every circumstance. No saying, “God plus something else”. Isn’t it clear that if I focus my mind on anything to think about it, enjoy it, invest in it, that that part of my mind used to do so will hypertrophy and dump out dopamine to urge me to focus even more? For where my treasure is there my heart will be also.
Let’s take something good such as saying that I will start a business in order to provide for my family. God says this is sin. I should say that I will do whatever God guides me to do and then starting a business together will clearly let me get to know him and let the two of us bond tighter. James 4:13
Unless I do good deeds because he asked me and my goal is to get to know him more, it is all wasted effort. If I cry out,” Lord, lord didn’t I visit the poor and sick and imprisoned and do it all in your name? ” He will respond, ” I have no idea who you are!” Matthew 7:23 So how do I rest in my salvation? Not by what I do or by how perfectly I do things, but by why I do it.
Obviously, if I do evil, I can not be doing it to get closer to Jesus. If I do nothing, I can’t be trying to share life with him. If I do “good deeds” deciding on my own what is good and doing them in my own strength and moaning about how tough it was, I am not getting to know him more. However, if I ask him,”So what do you want to do? Then you will have to help me. Wow, what a privilege to be a fellow servant, sufferer with you!” Then I can rest in that relationship even when my efforts are imperfect.
What about hanging on to just 1 % so that I have some sense of control and credit? Have you ever heard of Achilles tendon? The devil will grab that 1% and control the rest.
But does Jesus care about the little things of everyday life? Luke 16:10 If I do not live the little things with him why would he trust me with the “big” things? Besides don’t lovers want to know and be part of the little things in the other’s life? It is the best way to get to know them more? I am instructed, ” In all my ways seek to know him more, and he will direct my paths. Proverbs 3:6 (look up the word, acknowledge, it is the same as a husband and wife getting to know each other through sharing life and love with each other.)
So how do I put God first always and totally? You might try the tool that works for me. That is quoting the following 3 steps all day long, everyday and in all circumstances.
- Remember, I Can’t. Without him my life is but a vapor which vanishes like the morning mist. I will just mess it up and all my effort will be worse than nothing because it will cause trouble. So why should I do anything unless he wants to do it? And then we should do it together.
- Remember that He can. He cares, he wants to, and will, if I but let him.
- Now I must humbly picture what it would look like, if I did my will, and then picture what it would look like if I handled the current moment according to his will. I must then move my body parts according to a growing picture of his ways in action, (even if I don’t want to and can’t see how it will work, and do not see how it is fair and know that I am too weak and will probably loose everything.)
- I need to live out Jesus’ prayer, “Not my will but yours be done.” Delighting in walking the current challenge with him.