Monday, February 09, 2009


When I was a kid--a long time ago--the kids in class that could not sit still were the "bad kids" or the "rowdy kids". They got spanked. Over the years they were transformed into the "hyper kids". They were given lots of "time-outs" When I became the president of a Christian School for 18 years they became the "disruptive kids". They got lots of attention or even isolation. Today this type of child is usually referred to as suffering from ADD or Attention Deficit Disorder. They usually get medication.

This attention disorder has become so complex that ADD now has extra letters to describe why a particular child or adult is unable to pay attention to one thing for very long.

Imagine my surprise at learning that attention is the key to the quality of one's life. I should have seen it all along.
A friend uses this quote to help others learn to abide in Jesus and find peace for their souls.

"Whatever gets your attention gets you."

He is absolutely right. Human beings are first and foremost receivers not initiators or doers. Whatever we most consistently receive-pay attention to- is what will dictate what we produce as doing or fruit.

The challenge for the person with Attention Deficit Disorder is that they are too good at receiving. Maybe their challenge should be called ERD--Excellent Receiving Disorder. They receive too much and can't focus on anything for long because they just keep receiving.

Being good at receiving is not a deficit. It is to be very human. To not be able to choose what to receive and pay attention to, is to be at the mercy of every stimulus in the world. That is enough to make anyone unable to sit still in class.

There is hope for good receivers! They just need to choose to receive from the one source that matters which is from God through Christ. When they learn to focus on Jesus, they will be able to do more than sit still. They will learn to run and not be weary. They will find there is a universe of calming and exhilarating life to live found in paying attention to Him. Learning to do this has sure calmed me down!

Faith is the ability to receive well from God. All you who have attention issues rejoice! You have the most important of all skills. You receive well.

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