1 Timothy 6:12 (ESV)
Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.
General Bradford was definitely an unusual general. He was known far and wide for both his infinite patience and love as well as for His justice and wrath. His soldiers loved him dearly—and for good cause. His orders were always good, and he personally found a way to care for each of the soldiers who volunteered for his little band.
Michael had recently joined the general’s band, and was now quite anxious to prove himself a good soldier. His first task was to learn to march.
“The key to marching is to stay focused and to listen for my commands constantly,” the general explained. “See that distant horizon? Fasten your eyes fifteen degrees above the horizon line. Don’t let them wander to the circumstances or people around you. Keep your eyes focused above the horizon, and your ears tuned to my voice. You’ll find that many, many things will try to distract you.”
Michael couldn’t imagine anything distracting him from the horizon or the general’s voice. He’d soon find out, however, just how easily he could get distracted.
The first time Michael actually had the opportunity to march, he lifted his knees up nearly to his chest each step in an effort to look like a good marcher. He desperately wanted to do a good job to please the general!
The general shook his head and gently admonished the young private, “Don’t let your desire to show off distract you. True marching isn’t about lifting those knees in show; it’s about putting one step in front of the other in sync with my commands.”
Michael hung his head. He had allowed the thought of what others would think to distract him from really doing his job.
Michael tried again, this time not worrying about how he looked. Yet he had such a hard time keeping his eyes above the horizon! His eyes seemed to constantly wander to the things or people around him. Then he’d catch sight of the general and remember his command to look above the horizon. Would he ever learn?
“George,” Michael called reprovingly, “your step is a little fast, and wipe the grin off your face. And Scott, loosen up your arms and let them swing a little more natural and—”
“I said flight halt!”
Only after walking several paces in front of the rest of the troop did Michael finally hear the command. He didn’t think he could ever forget the general’s reproof, “Cadet, fall back in line. Keep your own eyes and ears attentive and let me take care of the others.”
Michael stepped back in line. He was beginning to realize that keeping focused would be a moment-by-moment battle. It was SO easy to get distracted!
As we serve the Lord each day keep your eyes and ears on the Lord and don’t let the things of the world distract you.
Dear Lord, we pray that we would stay focused and not get distracted. Help us to keep our eyes and our ears in tune with You . In the Name of Jesus, Amen.