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Paying Attention

This summer the Lord reminded me of a definition of prayer that I learned a few years ago. “To pray is to pay attention to what God is doing.” At the end of this past summer we were going through some challenging situations, which made it easy to focus on what the Lord wasn’t doing and on the prayers He wasn’t answering. One August evening while out walking our dog, Shawn and I decided to switch our conversation from complaining and worry to thankfulness. We literally started listing everything that we could think of that the Lord WAS doing. The list got long pretty quick. The next night we did it again, and again and again.

Two weeks into the Advent season, Shawn and I are reflecting back on the shift that happened in us at the end of the summer. For the most part, we have continued to pay attention to what God is doing, instead of dwelling on what we don’t see happening.  It’s amazing how different the day goes when he and I maintain this awareness.

As Shawn and I unplug during Advent, specifically from our phones in evening hours, we are finding it easier to pay attention.  It’s amazing how distracting the vibration of a text or the ding of an email can be at all hours of the day and night.  We are slow learners, and find ourselves falling back into old habits some days, but this intentional season of unplugging is helping us pay more attention to all the Lord is doing in our lives.

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