Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Power of Focus - Ps Kong Hee

A double-minded person constantly swings between conflicting choices in his life, achieving nothing but confusion and disarray. Discover the power of focus and let God's creative glory bring energy and power to all you do.

As a young boy, I loved scouting. I was enthralled when using my magnifying glass. Often I would focus sunlight through my magnifying glass on a matchstick, or a bunch of leaves, to see how long it would take to start a small fire. (My mother would become very upset with me for playing with fire!) I did learn something as a little boy: Focused light has tremendous power! On the other hand, diffused light, or scattered light, has very little power. Noted pastor-philosopher, Rev. Dr. A.R. Bernard, defines focus as "the center-point of attention."

In Luke 11:34 (KJV), Jesus teaches, "The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness." By talking about the need for singleness of vision, Jesus was advocating the power of focus. When you are single-minded, you are focused. When you are double-minded, you are constantly vacillating between two opinions. Double-mindedness will make you a very unstable person (James 1:7-8). But through mental and intellectual focus, the glory of creativity will be released inside of you.

SUNLIGHT VERSUS LASER LIGHT

Take the sun for instance. The sun is a powerful source of energy. Every hour, the sun washes the earth with billions of kilowatts of energy. The temperature of the outer, visible part of the sun is nearly 5,500 degrees Celsius. With some sunblock lotion, you can easily sunbathe for one to two hours without any problem.On the other hand, a laser is a relatively weaker source of energy. A laser takes a few watts of energy and focuses them into a coherent stream of light. Yet, with laser energy, you can drill a hole into a diamond, cut through steel beams, or wipe out cancer in a human body. In fact, you can focus that little laser energy into temperatures that exceed 5,500 degrees Celsius—hotter than the surface of the sun! Focused light has tremendous power!

As such, what Jesus teaches about focus is very important to us all. Why? Jesus answers, "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matt. 5:14, 16).

Focus can bring energy and power to whatever you do. Churches with focus have greater impact in a city than unfocused churches. The future of your business or career depends on the focus you put into it. Remember the old adage: If you are a Jack of all trades, you become a master of none!

THE GREAT COLA WAR

One of the greatest illustrations of the power of focus is the "Great Cola War" between Pepsi Cola and Coca Cola. In the mid-1980s, the market shares of Pepsi Cola and Coca Cola were about even.Pepsi then started buying Frito-Lay—the maker of "

Lay's Potato Chips"—the world's largest snack food company. Pepsi then bought Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and KFC, which were the world's largest pizza, Mexican and chicken fast food chains respectively. In addition to that, Pepsi also owns Hot n' Now, Chevys, Californian Pizza Kitchen, D√ĆAngelo Sandwich Shop, and East Side Mario's. Altogether Pepsi owns 24,000 restaurants, making it the largest restaurant owner in the world. In comparison, McDonald's has only 14,000 restaurants.

In the drink's department, Pepsi owns Pepsi Cola, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi Max, Pepsi XL, Mountain Dew, 7-Up, Slice, All Sport, and even Lipton Tea. And just for kicks, Pepsi also sells Russian vodka in the US.When you look at the parent company PepsiCo, it is very impressive. It has a much bigger spread than Coca-Cola. After all, Coca-Cola is only a beverage company, period. But while PepsiCo is worth US$44 billion, Coca-Cola is worth twice as much at US$93 billion. Per dollar of sales, Coca-Cola is worth almost four times as much as PepsiCo!Pepsi's philosophy is to be all over the world as quickly as possible. Coca-Cola has a simpler, more focused mission: To be number one in America. First, America, and only then, the whole world. That is the power of focus.Let us look at another comparison. While Pepsi owns 24,000 restaurants, McDonald's only owns 14,000 restaurants. But Pepsi's restaurants make only US$400 million in annual profit, whereas McDonald's restaurants make US$1.1 billion in annual profit. The 24,000 restaurants that Pepsi owns have an estimated combined value of US$10 billion. In comparison, the 14,000 restaurants that McDonald's owns are worth US$31 billion. The smaller, more focused company is worth three times as much as the larger, less focused company.

SUCCESS IS NOT HOCUS POCUS

Success is all about focus. Your vision is what you focus on; vision is what you see. Focus a camera on a flower and shoot. The emerging picture will not be a tree. Your vision must be a picture of what you choose to focus on. You will not experience success in life if you focus on anything other than the source of Life—Jesus Christ. No wonder the great apostle Paul says,

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 3:13-14)

Paul took all the energy he could muster to focus on the purpose God had put in front of him.

When you read about our Lord Jesus Christ in the Gospels, you will find that He was the most focused person in the world. He was always focusing on His Father's work. There was never a day that went by where Jesus was idling or getting distracted. Even at the tender age of 12, Jesus was already about His "Father's business" (Luke 2:49). Jesus never did or said anything that wasn't first initiated by His Father.In Luke 9:51-53, we read that Jesus was so focused in what He needed to do—going to Jerusalem, going to Calvary, going to the cross—that He could not be distracted. Three times in that passage, the Scripture describes that Jesus was so resolute, the intensity of His focus was evident all over "His face" and posture. He was 100 percent single-minded to be the Savior of the world.

Jesus ran His entire life according to God's purpose for Him. He fully concentrated on His life assignment. While He healed all who came to Him, He didn't heal every sick person in the places He visited. While He delivered the oppressed who came to Him, He didn't cast out every demon in every town.When He was at the pool of Bethesda, there was a great multitude of sick, blind, lame and paralyzed. Jesus only healed one man who had an infirmity for 38 years. Only one! Why didn't He heal the rest at the pool? Because it was not His heavenly Father's assignment for Him that day.

Countless times when Jesus went up to the Jerusalem temple to pray, He would have passed by a lame man by the Gate Beautiful. But not once did He stop to heal him. Why not? Because again, it was not God's assignment for Him. It was a task meant later on for Peter and John after the Day of Pentecost. As far as Jesus was concerned, He had to stay completely focused on His purpose.

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