Faith & Film Devotional, Week 5: Distractions

By April 3, 2014News

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It is sometimes incredibly hard to remain focused on the person or task that is directly in front of us. We certainly might be distracted by a buzzing cell phone. But we also might be distracted by the to-do list in our heads. Or we might be emotionally distracted by a situation that is hurting or worrying or exciting us. As you enter this time of devotion this week, try to eliminate distractions. Turn your phone upside down and put it on silent. If you’re doing this by yourself, enjoy some quiet time. If you are doing this as a family, make sure everyone is fully present – not just their bodWatch this clip from Brave (2012) as Merida and her family share a meal together (sort of).
 
 

 
 
In this scene, the family is all gathered in the same space and at the same table, but everyone is distracted by something. They are focused on their own concerns or interests while trying to talk to each other. Tension builds as the distractions are put aside to have a really difficult conversation that leaves everyone (except the triplets) very frustrated.

 

For individual or family reflection:

    • What distracts you most when you are with other people, whether at a meal or simply having a conversation?

    • What are you thinking about more than your company?

    • What was distracting each person in this scene? Merida? Mom (Elinor)? Dad (Fergus?) The triplets?

    • Merida and her mom seemed to have the most difficult relationship. What could they each have done better in this scene?

    • How could listening more carefully to each other helped the family?

    • What about this scene resembled your family? What looked totally different?

    • At your dinner table and in your life, what could you change to become less distracted and improve your relationship

 

Just for kids:

  • Has your mom or dad ever told you that you needed to pay attention to them?

  • What were you doing when they told you that?

  • Why do you think it is important to pay attention to mom and dad?

  • Have you ever felt like someone wasn’t paying attention to you when you were telling a story? How did it feel?

  • Distractions are things we look at when we’re supposed to be looking at something else. They are also the things we think about

  • when we’re supposed to be thinking about something else.

  • What distracts you?

  • Where do you get bored most often? Do you get bored easily?

  • What do you do when you get bored?

 

Read John 13: 34 – 35

 

This is a really famous passage. Jesus basically tells the disciples that they are to love each other just as Jesus has loved them. He left them with this one commandment. And it’s one that we are supposed to obey as well! It is the heart of Christian discipleship to love others as God has loved us. But we know that we frequently get distracted by far less important things and forget this very clear instruction.

 

This week, pay very close attention to the people and situations that are right in front of you. Be present with the people on your path. Listen to them. Care for them. Love them. Look for opportunities to love people as Jesus has loved you – that is big, forgiving, gracious love!

 

Pray (to yourself or with your family) for your heart and mind to focus on the people God needs you to love and the places you need to be in order to show God’s love. Pray that you would be less distracted and more attentive to God and people.

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