“Your focus determines your reality”, this famous line was spoken by Qui-Gonn Jinn of Start Wars-The Phantom Menace fame.
Ok, perhaps it is really infamous and you don’t remember that quote. Nonetheless, think about it for a moment. Would you agree or disagree?
I’m about to show you why I emphatically agree with this certain Jedi Master and not just because it’s from Star Wars…well not completely 😉 No I’m going to show you how your focus relates to anything you want to be successful in and then more specifically your Christian life. Ready? Let’s Go!
“Close or narrow attention; concentration” – so says Mister dictionary.com. When you are focusing on a certain aspect of anything, you generally ignore the rest of the picture. You’re concentrating so hard that the rest of it at the very least becomes far less important and occupies less of your mental powers.
So what happens? You get more of what you’re focusing on. And less of what you’re ignoring. You can be successful at what ever it is you are focusing on because you’re giving it all your attention. And everything else gets harder to become better at.
Whatever is in your focus, you will start to concentrate on it and you will be better conditioned to alter certain aspects of your life which will allow the object of your focus to actually become a true part of your life.
Perhaps an example is in order:
Say you are on a diet. You’re not allowed to eat any carbohydrates. So what should you focus on? If you’re gonna focus on the fact that you can’t eat donuts and ho hos, what do you think you’re gonna be craving all day? That’s right–ho hos and donuts!
Now instead, lets say you focus on how you can make a great tasting meal out of fresh vegetables and yummy lean meat products, how you’re gonna prepare them, cook them and enrich the flavor. What do you think you’re gonna be craving that night? The no-carb-lean-meaty meal of course!
See how your focus determines your reality? If you’re concentrating on what you shouldn’t be doing, you’re setting yourself up for failure…are you starting to see how this relates to your Christian walk?
What do most Christians focus on? What do most preachers preach on? What you can’t do! Am I right? The only result that can come from focusing on what you can’t do is you doing exactly that! Most Christians think in terms of what they can’t do–the law.
The Bible goes so far as to say that we would not even know about sin if it wasn’t for the law:
“On the contrary, I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, “YOU SHALL NOT COVET.
But sin, taking opportunity through the commandment, produced in me coveting of every kind”
Likewise we would not even have the desire to do what we’re not supposed to do if we weren’t focused on not doing it. (just read it again, It’ll make sense).
So it is clear that by fixating our attention on what it is we are trying to avoid, we are actually setting ourselves up for failure. You can’t focus on what you don’t want and get what you want.
But you need to focus on something! And like our diet example, the right way to focus is on what you do want! Just like the diet works if you focus on the good foods, your Christian life will work if you focus on what is good–Jesus Christ and his life that he gave you.
Focusing on Christ and allowing him to express himself through you daily is the key to success in your Christian life. Pay no heed to what you’re not supposed to do, “out of sight-out of mind!”.
So I guess ole Qui Gonn was right, “your focus does determine your reality”!