Intentionality Redux

You know that feeling when you write a very quick email, hit “send” and immediately regret it?  Yeah… I’m feeling that right now.

I rushed through my last post.  I started out right, with the man at the coffee shop pointing out the importance of intentionality in following Jesus.

But then I got all dry.

And impersonal.

Not a very good examp!e of intentionality for a piece about intentionality.

Maybe if I repeat the word “intentionality” enough in this follow up post, the message about intentionality would come through clearer.

Maybe I should just get a bit personal here.

When I’m not being intentional in my wa ok with God, I know it.  I feel it.  I feel overwhelmed by life.  I feel empty.  My mind is certainly not renewed.  I feel a great burden – the burden of not following Christ as I should.

You see, following the Lord brings us freedom.  It’s like any other relationship in that, if you do nothing to nurture it, it will atrophy.



And while God will never let go of His children, it sure is a better life when we’re intentional about our relationship with God.

Which means being intentional about seeking Him first.

Which means being intentional about time in prayer and the Word.

Which means being intentional about remembering t hat God works all things to the good of His children.

Which means being intentional about remembering I am God’s child.

Which means being intentional about loving others.

Which means being intentional about letting go of the junk that keeps me from God.

Being intentional means keeping your focus on what’s important.  Think about Peter’s instruction about anxiety: cast all your cares on God because He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).  Casting is an intentional act.

You see your target.

You aim at said target.

You launch.

God takes care of our problems.  But we have to be intentional about casting our worries on Him, choosing to believe in – trust – God over our own perceptions.

That’s what living intentionally in God is: choosing to follow Him even when it makes you uncomfortable.  Even when it makes no sense. Even when it feels too hard.

In Christ, living intentionally = loving intentionally.

Loving God.

Loving others.

Seeking God first requires intentionality.  It means following Him, not our own selfish desires. Even when it makes no earthly sense.

Intentionality – seeking God’s kingdom first – reminds me God is God and I am not.  In fact, it shows me the depth of my need for the Lord in all things, at all times.  It makes me grateful for His forgiveness, which I do not deserve and cannot ezrn.  It makes me grateful for His love, which I could never ever repay.

Intentionality.  There.  I had to say it one more time.



19 And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 Immediately they left their nets and followed him. – Matthew 4:19-20 [ESV]

A dear friend made a cross necklace for me.  I wear it not only because it is a gift from a brother in Christ, but because it is a great conversation starter, and a much needed reminder for me.

As I was doctoring my overpriced cold press decaf with cream and sweetener this morning, a gentleman approached me.  “I like your cross”, he said.

Conversation open.  “I find it’s a great reminder”, I said.  To which he replied, “You have to be intentional in your walk.  If you’re not intentional, He leaves.”

The Bible is full of quiet little reminders of our need to be intentional about following Jesus.  “Follow Me” we are told.  “Listen to Me.  Heed My Word.  Love God first and love other as yourself.”

We each have a roll to play, and it is simply this: be intentional.  Make a point of practicing putting God first.  Jesus told us to seek first  the kingdom of God – His will, His ways, His leading – and all we need, all the stuff we needlessly worry about, will be taken care of.

In other words, be intentional in your walk.  Unfortunately our default is sin.  That is part and parcel of the fall.  And, if we stand and follow Jesus, we will certainly trip and fall.

Following Christ is simple.  But isn’t necessarily easy.  Still, nothing of any value is easily obtained.  So be intentional.  Seek the Lord for, foremost and above all else.  Pray. Stay in His Word.  Love others.  Love God.  Share your faith.  Realize your freedom comes from His sacrifice  – it is a gift!

Be thankful.

Be faithful.

Be intentional.