Friday, June 12, 2009

Fixing your focus

How’s your focus?

Prior to being diagnosed with diabetes, I first knew something was physically wrong with me when my eyesight – which had been normally good – began to fail. It wasn’t a gradual thing, but literally overnight I went from being able to read fine print on labels and other items to not being able to see the words at all.

I laughed and chalked it up to yet another thing that happens once you turn 40. Nevermind I had been 40 for several months (OK, a couple of years, but what is age, really!?).

One of the first things Dr. Glisson asked me during my initial visit with him was about changes in my vision. I told him my focus had been off and that had really bothered me. Later he explained that one of the side effects of diabetes is blurry vision. Fortunately, I’ve visited Dr. Jennifer and she says that although I don’t have 20/20 vision, the diabetes hasn’t gotten into my eyes yet.

Reading glasses (which tend to stay on my face probably more than they should at work) have helped to rectify the problems I’ve been having with focus lately. But they haven’t totally fixed it. Even with glasses, I’ve found when my blood sugar levels are too low or too high, I have a problem focusing on what it is I am trying to see.

And it’s not just diabetes that causes me to lose focus in my life.

Just this morning as I was driving to work, a black cat crossed my path. There was a time in my life when I might have made a cross on my windshield or done some other activity associated with superstition to negate that cat’s movement. I laughed at myself for not being superstitious as I decided to turn left rather than continue through the intersection where I had been stopped at a stop sign.

Because I was more focused on that silly black cat and stupid superstitions, I almost pulled out in front of an SUV whose driver was turning left in front of me – and, for the record, had the right-of-way.

Taking my focus off the task at hand – driving safely – almost put me into a car crash that I really didn’t want to have on a beautiful Friday morning.

Once upon a time, there was someone who wanted something with all their heart. The entire focus of their being was fixed on this one thing and it was literally almost all that they could think about.

When it finally became part of their life, they were overjoyed. Here was the thing they had waited for, and it was good.

But in a short time, they realized - like a garment that was too small or a square peg trying to drop into a round hole - the thing simply didn’t fit into their life. It wasn’t as magical as they thought it would be and, instead, was a bit superficial.

The person realized their focus had been wrong and they had wasted precious time – time they would never regain – focusing on something they really didn’t need after all.

Instead the person began to set their sites, like Philippians 4:8 encourages, on “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute.”

And life suddenly seemed to have a bit more clarity when their focus returned to normal.

“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” – Phillipians 4:8

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