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Tune Out Distractions. An actor was once asked how he completed his job on set when he struggled to be “in the moment,” or “in character.” I believe the student posing the question was essentially asking, how do you act, when you can’t seem to tune out distractions. In response the actor said he would consider how his character would act if he were in the same situation. He would consider what his character would do if he had trouble focusing, was thinking about the past instead of the present, or was consumed with future concerns. For this actor, simply thinking about the character’s response would help him deliver a more authentic performance as that character.

Much like an actor not fully “in character,” I have entered worship without being fully present. I have yielded to the internal and-or external distractions that come from living life. Life does provide many distractions, and they certainly seep into times of corporate worship. I wonder how many times I have simply accepted the distractions without attempting to refocus my whole self on Father Son and Holy Spirit.

When in a distracted state, I’m given a few choices: I can accept my distracted state with complacency, I can deny my distraction, or I can prayerfully surrender my distractions to God. Like the actor who would consider how his character would act if he had trouble focusing, I can acknowledge my distracted state while also reframing the situation. The actor casts his distraction in the framework of his character in a dramatic production just as I can cast my distraction in God’s framework; and thus I draw closer to God and enter worship less impacted by distractions.

I encourage you to acknowledge your distractions and offer them to God. When you can’t seem to be “in the moment” let prayer restore your present focus.