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Managing a Meandering Mind

How one pastor looks for God when he is distracted.
Managing a Meandering Mind

Like the prodigal son, my mind wanders recklessly into a far country when I pray. In moments of solitude when I am just getting close to God, my brain shifts into gear and speeds off for the highway.

I tried making a list.

I tried walking around with my eyes open.

I tried praying out loud; I tried praying real loud.

The harder I tried to eliminate the distractions the more frustrating they became.

Then an idea came to me unexpectedly. What if the interruptions are God's effort to dialogue with me in prayer? Perhaps God has a better handle on prayer requests than I do. What if I allowed him to use the distractions to direct my prayers?

I decided to surrender my prayer agenda and to stop fighting the interruptions. Instead of battling my wandering mind, I lift up each random thought in prayer when it comes: "Lord I'm thinking about doughnuts. You got any idea why?" Sometimes praying on it clears the thought away, but other times God uses the thought to speak to me (like convicting ...

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