Distractions That Destroy

Distractions That Destroy

For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
–1 Timothy 6:10

In Luke 8, Jesus mentioned three distractions that destroy our relationship with God. First of all, He listed worry. Worry can be a tremendous distraction in your relationship with God. In fact, the word “worry” comes from an old German word that means “to strangle.” That is exactly what worry does–it grabs hold of us and strangles the life out of us. Where does that emotion of worry come from? Here is a hint: I read recently that 92 percent of all the things we worry about never come true. In other words, those worries are lies that come from Satan, who is “a liar and the father of lies” (John 8:44). If he cannot cause you to reject God, he wants to distract you from God by wrapping the tentacles of worry around your emotions and thoughts.

Satan has a second distraction that he uses, and that is riches. You might be thinking, “At least that does not apply to me. Of all the things I worry about, having too much money is not one of them.” You might want to think again. It is not only having too much money that can be a distraction in your relationship with God; having too little money can also be a powerful distraction in life. You are probably familiar with Matthew 6:24: “You cannot serve God and wealth.” What most people do not realize is that Jesus was not preaching to wealthy people here. In the next verse, He said, “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?” Jesus was speaking to people who were worried about where their next meal was coming from, and He was saying, “You need to understand that this overconcern about money can strangle out your love for God.”

Two thousand years later, not much has changed. Most of us are not concerned about having too much money; we are concerned that we do not have enough to take care of ourselves and our families. Businesses spend hundreds of millions of dollars to feed that fear. We are told that unless we have accumulated millions of dollars by the time we reach age sixty-five, we are destined to eat oatmeal the rest of our days. Or that unless we take out an expensive nursing home policy, we are destined for bankruptcy in our senior adult years. Or that unless we set aside thousands of dollars every month for our future children’s education, they will never get a good job in life. Yes, there is good, sound financial planning that we ought to engage in, but when it is rooted in the paralyzing fear that we are not going to have enough, it becomes a distraction from serving God. A concern for money is an enemy to our faith. Paul said it this way in 1 Timothy 6:10: “For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”

Today’s devotion is excerpted from “Blueprint For Your Destruction” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2010.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved. www.lockman.org.