When You’ve Distracted Yourself From God

Confession: Bible nerds absolutely get distracted.

Okay, well I don’t know every Bible nerd buuuuuuuut Bible nerds are humans and humans get distracted, therefore, Bible nerds get distracted. What I probably can’t speak to is how often and to what degree. I can only speak for myself.

As someone who loves the Bible & teaches the Bible (both online and in person at my local church), it would make sense that I’m often reading and studying and just loving all things quiet time and devotions. The truth of the matter is that isn’t always the case. I absolutely get distracted in my relationship with Jesus.

Here’s the deal: I have the ability to trick my brain into thinking that creating faith-based content or resources (scripture writing plans & Bible studies, etc.) is the same as spending time at the feet of Jesus. And while there can be some overlap, it’s not the same thing. That’s actually a short-circuited version of what it should be –

Spending time with Jesus results in rich, honest content and resources I can share with others.

But the pressure to perform at the same speed and level as I see on social media constantly tempts me to short circuit the process, cut corners with God, and have the nerve to think that I can point people to a Savior that I don’t value enough to give the best of my time and attention.

Wuuuuuuuuut. Let that sink in for a minute.

Lemme tell you that this hamster wheel of a ride isn’t sustainable because inevitably, you get tired and what little spiritual fuel you had stored up gets used up and you need another drink of the living water Jesus promised to provide if we would just slow down and spend time with Him.

The devil knows he has an in with me when I’m busy. When I’m tired. When I’m enamored with what others are doing and I play the comparison game. When I’m emotionally worn out. When there’s a problem I can’t solve. He knows he has an in and he strikes when the iron is hot.

The past several weeks has been one of those seasons when I wore myself out trying to do all the things without relying on the strength and grace of Jesus and I got distracted…

…with social media,

…with podcasts,

…with Netflix,

…with food.

Ugh. And it’s a very weird feeling to desire to pick up my Bible and read but to be too lazy to do it and just open IG and scroll mindlessly for another 30 minutes. Half of my brain is telling me to straighten up and just go read my Bible and the other half of my brain is like, “you can do it later, it’s fine”.

I can’t be the only one who goes through this.

On the one hand, I want to make space for the struggle, because it’s real. But on the other hand, if you came up to me and said that you felt like your relationship with your husband was strained and I found out you were scrolling, binge-watching, and Amazon browsing more than actually talking to your man, when he’s been waiting for you to hang out with him, I’d have something to say to you, wouldn’t I? It should be no different with God. If I profess to be in relationship with God then I absolutely should take it seriously when I’ve distracted myself from Him.

If this is something that happens to you too, let me walk you through my 3-step process of getting back on track with Jesus.

Here we go!

1. Find the trigger

It’s been my experience that when I start distancing myself from God or distracting myself from Him, there was a trigger, something that caused the drift. You may not be able to pinpoint it right away but start thinking back to when you stopped praying, reading the Bible, or started falling into unproductive behavior. Here are some examples –

  • Emotional overwhelm
  • Pride
  • Unconfessed sin
  • Loss of control over a situation
  • Bad habits (too much TV, social media, entertainment, social engagement, staying too busy, etc.)

If you can’t figure out what the trigger was, move to the next step.

If you did figure it out, move to the next step.


2. Pray

If you haven’t been talking to God the way you used to, just start. Just pray.

If you need help with the trigger, ask Him to show you what it was.

If you did find your trigger, ask Him to help you work through it.

If you have sin to confess, confess it and ask for forgiveness.

If you need help with a tough situation, ask for guidance.

If you’ve been hurt, bring Him your pain.

If you’re confused, ask for clarity.

If you’re struggling with addiction ask for deliverance.

Whatever it is, just pray. I’m telling you, unburdening yourself before the Lord is so freeing. Your problems and struggles will not magically disappear but you’ll be able to rest in the knowledge that He holds it all in His hands and He is in control. And just like picking up where you left off with a good friend can be so good for the heart, picking up where you left off with God is truly life-giving and soul-satisfying.

3. Feed Yourself Truth

If you’ve ever been declared vitamin D deficient by your doctor, you know they prescribe what seems like an overdosage to get you back to normal levels. When you’re deficient in the Word, you need to give yourself a great big dose of truth to get you back on track. There are so many things you can start doing –

  • Open your Bible to familiar, well-loved verses
  • Start a new study
  • Pick up where you left off in your Bible reading plan
  • Choose a new devotional
  • Start a scripture writing plan
  • Listen to sermons
  • Listen to worship music
  • Go to church if you haven’t been
  • Join a small group
  • Create a new quiet time or Bible study ritual
  • Start memorizing scripture
  • Start a prayer journal
  • Put daily quiet time in your calendar

And while you’re feeding yourself truth, consider starving yourself of the junk you may have been consuming/consuming too much of. I’m not saying you can’t get back on social media or watch TV BUT if what you’ve been in the habit of consuming was part of what distracted you from God, putting distance and or boundaries around those things will keep you from being distracted all over again.

What do you do when you need to get back on track in your relationship with Jesus? Let me know in the comments below!

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to turn on my quiet time playlist and do some reading & journaling!

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