Do You Catch Yourself Falling off Track?

Off track

It doesn’t take much to allow yourself to drift off track. One day it’s the second week of June and you’re in Chicago watching a baseball game. Then you look at your phone while taking a quick break and realize it’s September. That’s how the summer has gone for me anyway.

Please forgive me if this seems more like a journal entry than an article. Because spending time in Scripture and writing a letter to Jesus is part of my routine anytime I write something that someone else actually hits the publish button on, I just realized how many weeks it’s been since I have written anything in my prayer journal other than, “please make sure my wife and daughter know how much I love them.” Just give me a sec to get a few things off my mind. I promise, there’s a message. God just hasn’t told me what it’s going to be yet.

Have you ever caught yourself spending so much time basking in the blessings that you neglect spending time showing God just how much they mean to you? If you’ve allowed yourself to get off track, don’t worry. No one knows you’re reading this. It’s ok, to be honest with yourself about it. That’s been one of the reasons this summer has disappeared so quickly for me. Preparing the house my family is buying in Indiana before my family makes the move from Texas. Working as much as I can at a new job. Plus, trying to stay awake long enough to complete homework. Yes, God has blessed me and my wife far more than I ever could have imagined just six months ago.

I knew there would be some sacrifice when it came to my time. I just wish I could take back a couple of 15-minute time periods and spend them letting God know how thankful I am for what He has given us. That being said, I can’t help but think back to watching my oldest two children open Christmas presents when they were still young enough to play with toys. Yes, I enjoyed hearing them repeat how much the gifts meant to them. However, the real joy came from watching them play with their new gifts.

Gratitude is an action

I’m not saying it’s OK to neglect time with God. However, because He is a loving Father, I would imagine it’s the same with Him. He enjoys seeing the hard work I am doing remodeling the house. The extra effort I give while on the clock all day shows Him more gratitude than I could ever talk about. The fact that I am still awake trying to write something that makes sense to you shows Him how much I appreciate the talents given to me as a writer.

However, the further off track I become, the thinner my patience become. I’ve noticed little things that normally wouldn’t get my attention starting to affect my attitude and the way I respond. The five hours rest a night doesn’t seem to be as much as it was just a few weeks ago. I have even allowed myself to begin thinking because of my new job, writing might not be as important to my future as it was just earlier this year.

Noticing a need for change when off track

I’ve experienced enough ups and downs in my relationship with Jesus that I can recognize getting off track in time to make a change. I am not going to use the word punishment. But these are consequences I experience when spending time with God is not a big enough priority in my life. While these side effects may look different in your life, each of us knows when the Holy Spirit is tapping us on the shoulder.  The Holy Spirit lets us know that it’s time to talk. It’s up to us to decide whether or not we are going to listen.

I always have the same goal whenever I am writing. Try and inspire someone to grow a little closer to God than they were before they started reading. However, I think this article had someone in particular who needed to read what was written. As I mentioned earlier, I apologize if this seems too much like a journal entry. Just maybe, He wanted to use me and what I have been going through in order to make the tap He’s giving you a little louder.

Written by Jeffrey Stevens

My greatest blessings and responsibilities in life are my wife and our children. I'm a theology student at Aidan University and the Founder and President of Gospel Grammar. My goals as a writer are to inspire others to seek a more intimate relationship with Jesus Christ and encourage them to live a Gospel centered life.

4 thoughts on “Do You Catch Yourself Falling off Track?

  1. Don’t worry about the “journal” format. I have posted just a simple prayer, because that is what God gave me that day. I would much rather read what is obviously real than something cold, yet perfectly structured. Keep up the great work!

  2. This is a great post man! I’d still call it a post, not a journal entry 🙂

    I love the thought that you have here, that maybe God just wants to us operating in what He has blessed us with. This is a great perspective and very helpful to me this weekend.

    THANK YOU!

  3. Isn’t it interesting when we become true followers and know where we should spend healthy time, it’s more evident to us when we spend our time in unhealthy ways?

    “I’ve experienced enough ups and downs in my relationship with Jesus that I can recognize getting off track in time to make a change.”

    Just a few days ago I noticed my nights were getting longer, I wasn’t sleeping as well, my mind racing and I couldn’t figure out why. Suddenly it hit me, I wasn’t reading as much as I had been. I wasn’t plugging into my Christian authors like I had been. Work was getting the best of my time, trying to make time for myself had taken up my late afternoons, planning a wedding was consuming some of my time…but how quickly I was reminded that without keeping first things first, I wouldn’t be successful in any of the extra things I wanted to do. Great read Jeffrey!

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