Sean Grady posted a quote that read;
Fate whispers to the warrior, “You cannot withstand the storm.” The warrior whispers back, “I am the storm.”
That fires me up. Being a warrior can mean multiple things and have many applications. However, I believe being ready and present is among the top characteristics of a warrior. Men and women alike can be warriors. We have warriors of actual combat but we also have warriors in the community fighting for positive relationship with friends and family. We have warriors who are considered prayer warriors for their praying without ceasing. Warriors are respectful, mindful, and present. The ability to be present is what I’d like to focus on. If I had a word or concentration for the coming year, it would be “present”. How can we be more present and what does that actually mean? Being present is the act of understanding the distractions around you yet remaining in the moment. Regardless of the context or focus a person must be mindful of the distractions and stresses presented but fully aware of their existing duties. Our bibles give us great examples of why we should be present and how.
First, I’d like to pose an example of what happens when we are not present. What can happen while you are distracted? Are there things going on in your house while you sit in front of the TV? Anything important happening in the world around you as you sit, head bowed, flipping through your phone? Do these diversions take precedence over your family? The first story of the bible shows us Adam, the first man, not being present. In Genesis 3, the crafty serpent comes on the scene to beguile Eve with the idea that God’s word is not absolute and she has not been given all to her utmost benefit. We read that she is convinced and takes fruit from the tree of life and eats as God has told her not to. However, she was not alone. Genesis 3:6
When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.
Eve catches much of the blame for sin entering the world. However, her husband, rock and protector, was virtually absent. Satan is there in the garden spitting lies about God to Eve and Adam is checking Facebook. He was “with” her but he was not being present. Jesus spoke to this while he was showing how to be present.
In Mark 3, we find Jesus teaching and healing while vast multitudes followed Him. So much so that eating was a task. No matter how many were around or how many challenges were made by Pharisees and Scribes, Jesus stayed on focus. In Mark 3 he speaks against not being present.
23 And He called them to Himself and began speaking to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? 24 If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. 25 If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. 26 If Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but he is finished! 27 But no one can enter the strong man’s house and plunder his property unless he first binds the strong man, and then he will plunder his house.
Jesus understands the power in being present. “If a house is divided against itself, that house will not stand.” This is a powerful statement. We must be present and aware to combat against division in our lives. Now read verse 27 again, “but no one can enter the strong man’s house and plunder his property unless he first binds the strong man, and then he will plunder his house.” Is anything binding you? Are there distractions that allow destruction of your house? If Jesus knows this simple fact you can bet that Satan uses it in his arsenal against God’s people. Bind the strong man and his house is free to plunder.
Check out this article for a more introspective perspective on “being present.”