Fight Club: The Battle to be Present

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At Hope and Magnolia Churches, we’ve been in a series called Fight Club where we are looking at the battles that we all face. This past Sunday, we looked at the battle to be present in our relationships with one another and with God.

The scripture lesson was Judge 14:1-9. Samson- who is on his way to introduce his parents to the Philistine woman he wants to marry (which is its only problem) kills a lion with his bare hands. A few days later, on his way to the wedding he “turns aside to see the carcass of the lion” which was full of bees and honey. Samson did what we all might do- he scooped the honey out of the carcass and ate it! This started a downward spiral at his wedding feast resulting in Samson storming off in anger and his wife being given to one of Samson’s friends in marriage!! (Sounds like a reality TV series)

What I find fascinating is the phrase “turned aside.” Samson was heading in one direction (his wedding day) and he turned aside. How often do we know the direction we are to be heading in our relationships with one another and God yet we “turn aside” to view some dead lifeless place in our lives?

Do you remember the story of Adam and Eve? Satan tempts Eve to eat the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Now you would think that Adam would fight off the serpent, hit him with a rake or other gardening tool (they were, after all, in the Garden of Eden), but Adam did nothing.Eve was in a battle for her life and at that moment Adam was silent. As a husband, Adam had one job at that moment, to protect his wife.

When we turn aside from our focus, we create space for sin to invade our lives. When we are not fully present, sin fully presents itself to us.

We live in a distracted world. We waste countless hours on Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Tumblr while missing out on relationships with the people right in front of us. We turn towards the things that distract us and in doing so, we turn aside from our relationship with God.

What is it that distracts you? What causes you to turn aside from your relationship with your spouse? Your Children? Your friends? Your relationship with God?

How would those relationships be different if you were to win the battle to be present?

About Steve LaMotte

Husband and father of three amazing children. Campus Minister of Wesley College in Dover, Delaware. Pastor at Hope United Methodist Church in Dover, Delaware. Elder in the Pen-Del Conference. Fan of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Steelers. Lover of music that makes hipsters cringe.
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