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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: See (07/22/10)

TITLE: The Greatest Show on Earth
By Cheryl Harrison
07/26/10


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Up until last week I had never seen the circus with my own eyes. So, when the opportunity presented itself, I jumped at it. I couldn't wait to see lions, and tigers, and bears! I also couldn't wait to see clowns and trapeze artists. Little did I know, but even my family would be part of the Greatest Show on Earth... the traffic part.

After much ado, we arrived at our seats. Lights and music filled the room. Clowns tripped and fell while others laughed at their folly. Magicians enticed volunteers into magic boxes and proceeded to saw them in half or make them vanish into thin air. I couldn't keep up. Everything moved too fast! One minute the circus floor became alive with dancers and clowns. Suddenly, they were gone and elephants paraded around the room. Without warning the lights shifted to the ceiling where a young couple danced... upside down. I still don't understand why they didn't pass out. The dancers captured my attention until a tiger cage appeared on the floor. Right then I realized that the circus had mastered the art of distraction. They made me look left so I would not see what they were doing on the right. Then they made me look up so I would not see what they were doing on the floor.

I cannot help but compare the circus with everyday life. Most of our calendars resemble a 3-Ring circus. Some of us run around like circus clowns. We fall down (or we push someone down) and then we laugh. Others of us try to balance life on our shoulders while we venture out onto a tightrope. A select few choose to train lions. Then, like me, others of us love to dance upside down. Warning! If we dance upside down for too long, the blood rushes to our head and we lose our mind.

Yes, the circus uses distraction well, but the true master of distraction is the enemy of our souls. Satan hates it when Christians focus on God and his repeated use of distraction almost always achieves his purpose... Christians who take their eyes off of God.

In the John 21:15-23 we find a perfect example: Jesus was in a deep conversation with Peter. Here, Jesus asks Peter three times about love and then, after Peter responds to each question, Jesus gives him an assignment... Feed my lambs...Take care of my sheep...Feed my sheep. This, my friend, was Peter's call into the ministry. After this, Jesus revealed something else to Peter... "I tell you the truth, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go." The reason Jesus said this was to indicate how Peter's death would glorify God. Jesus told Peter that someone would lead him where he did not want to go, but then added... Follow me! In other words... "Peter, no matter what happens do not take your eyes off of me." But alas, while Jesus was still talking, Peter turned around and became distracted by someone who was following them... When Peter saw him, he asked, "Lord, what about him?" Jesus answered, "If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? You must follow me."

Could it be that like Peter, we have a short attention span. While the Lord reveals His plan for us our focus turns toward other people or other things? Does Satan's sleight of hand grab our attention and the voice of the Lord becomes nothing but a soft echo in our ears. Then, before we realize it, the snare of distraction snaps shut.

Don't fret! God is able to free snared people. Distractions may come and go, but one thing is clear... God's work is God's work. He has no need to compete with Himself. God can accomplish many different things through many different people at the same time. Our part is to remain focused. Hey, did you see that? The Greatest Show in Heaven and on Earth... God at work!

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured
the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Hebrews 12:2 NIV



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This article has been read 554 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Cindy Barclay07/29/10
"Our part is to stay focused!" Great article, vivid imagery and then bam- you hit me with the great application. I constantly struggle with distractions and getting derailed- I'm going to mediate on the truths you shared.
Lizzy Ainsworth07/29/10
Very good comparison - my life feels like this a lot.
My writing for this theme was very similar too yours,about focus, but you put a new spin on it for me.
thanks
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 07/29/10
This is a great devotion. You did a good job in finding great analogies to hit your point home.
Fern Brown07/30/10
Excellent job! I loved the way you presented that the devil is the master of distractions in a Christian's life and we just need to concentrate totally on God's commands.
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/04/10
Your analogies are excellent, as is your message.
Beth LaBuff 08/04/10
I enjoyed seeing the circus through your eyes and your message was excellent. Very nice!
Lollie Hofer 08/05/10
Oh please, I'm never one of those...hold on while I get a cup of coffee...distracted people. I always stay...wait a sec, I love this commercial on tv...focused. I'll have to think more...I've got to get the camera, my grandson is so cute...about what you said. Actually, I AM one of those folks who can become easily distracted. Thanks for sharing the Truth from God's word. Loved the ending...greatest show on heaven and earch.
Ruth Brown 08/23/10
Cheryl, This was a wonderful devotional. I'm glad it was recognized and Highly commended. Using the circus and the distractions was a perfect example. May God continue to bless your writing.Ruth