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How to Refresh Your Mind and Draw Close to God

We can be overwhelmed by the distractions of life and divert our attention to the One who can sustain us, restore us and refresh us in our mind set on life. Angela Hurley-Smith a Brandy Williams give practical and helpful tips to regaining that quality time with God to help us flourish in the gardens of our life.




Podcast




Show Notes

 



Spring blooms with new life, reminding us to prepare our gardens for growth and producing flowers, fruits and vegetables. What is needed?

  • Prepare soil - nutrients, fertilize, add proper amount of water and tools necessary

  • Plant the seeds or transplant seedlings - reading and meditating on God's words

  • Pull weeds - negative thoughts and bad company

  • Prune - cut out things that pull us away from God and time with God and His Word

  • Water... with the Word of God regularly


 Spiritually, we must stay connected with the True Vine (Jesus) in order to blossom and bear fruit.


How?

 

We cultivate this by taking time to listen to God through reading the Bible and our prayer time.

Matthew 13:3-8 Story about a Farmer


What keeps us from our “Quiet Time”?

  • Busyness of life

  • Caring for kids, elderly parents,

  • Job (schedule, overnights)

  • Health Issues                                                  

  • Family trauma

  • Social media

  • Bing watching videos

  • Entertainment, sporting events

 

Distraction = something that directs one’s attention away from something else.


Source of Distractions:

  • Some are unavoidable (unexpected circumstances)

  • They come from all angles

  • They can cost time, happiness, peace, relationships, money, etc

 

two women talking about gardening analogy to our lives with God
Angela Smith and Brandy Williams talking on the value of our quiet time vs distractions

God's Perspective on Distractions

 

The Things of the World...

"Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect." Romans 12:2 NLT

  - Temptation to adapt to the ways of the world

  - Chase fame

  - Pursue fortune

  - Attention pulls away to selfish ambitions; can produce jealousy


Self-Focused Desires

14 Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. 15 These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death." James 1:14-15 NLT

- world offers temptations to our fleshly desires


Our Thought World

"And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise." Philippians 4:8 NLT

- major distraction is our thoughts

- control thoughts when they surface


Other People

- We can allow what people think of us to distract us = Galatians 1:10 NLT

- The distraction could be against us = Nehemiah 6:2 NLT

- Sometimes we need to avoid certain people when they hinder our Christian walk. = 1 Corinthians 7:35 NLT

 

Our Circumstances

30 And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you. Why do you have so little faith? 31 “So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ 32 These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. 33 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. Matthew 6:30 – 33 NLT

- Pain

- Finances

- the unexpected

 

                                                             

How to Overcome Distractions

 

1. Identify What Distracts You

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1 NIV

                               

2. Identify the Problem (weeds of the garden)

  • TV

  • Electronics

  • Laziness

  • procrastination

  • you name it ________________________________

 

3. Determine Ways to Eliminate or Reduce Distractions

"Make a clean break with all cutting, backbiting, profane talk." Ephesians 4:31 MSG

  • Eliminate what you can - take baby steps

  • TV = unplug maybe not physically, but choose to watch less on

  • Cell phone = turn off

  • Social Media = delete apps

               

4. Change your Environment

"Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, He got up, went out, and made His way to a deserted place. And He was praying there." Mark 1:35 HSC

Create a distraction free zone

Consider another place all together to be alone with God

Need to clear your mind, take a walk

Need advise - go seek a like-minded person or mentor

                               

5. Have a Daily Task List or Vision (if you’re a list person)

"Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men" Colossians 3:23 ESV


"2 Then the LORD said to me, “Write my answer plainly on tablets, so that a runner can carry the correct message to others. 3 This vision is for a future time. It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled. If it seems slow in coming, wait patiently, for it will surely take place. It will not be delayed." Habakkuk 2:2-3 NLT


  • Set a goal to accomplish

  • Work as if you’re working for the Lord (put the effort in)

  • Realize you can’t conquer it all (break it down to manageable tasks)

  • Set a time to start and a limit to accomplish each task to stay balanced

  • Never confuse busy with productivity

 

6. Monitor your Thoughts

"You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You." Isaiah 26:3NKJV

  • Observe where your thoughts go, creating emotions that are peaceful and a 'can do' attitude vs. overwhelmed

  • Thoughts in our heads can be our biggest distraction

  • Negative thoughts can be detrimental in the following ways:

    • Stress

    • Anxiety

    • Worry, fear, doubt

    • Could produce: sickness, headaches, and depression


7. Read Gods Word and Pray Daily = Jesus, our daily Bread and Living Water

                                                                   

8. Declare the Word Daily over Loved Ones

"6 And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. 7 Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. 8 Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. 9 Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates." Deuteronomy 6:6-9 NLT


  • Affirmations to display at areas you'll see throughout the day

  • Post-it notes with God's promises

  • Write Scriptures on mirrors with an expo marker

 

9. Beware of the devil and his tactics

"Keep your mind clear, and be alert. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion as he looks for someone to devour." 1 Peter 5:8 GW

               

  • He will distract

  • Best way to stay alert is focus on God daily

 

10. Refocus your Mind

  • Redirect your focus back to God

  • Even when we veer off course, God is still there

 

Benefits of Time Spent with the Lord

  • Rest mentally and physically

  • Peace no matter the conditions and circumstances

  • Fruit of a healthy life, even in challenging times

               

                                                               



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