John D. Telgren

Sometimes looking at the etymology of a word yields interesting results. While not a sound way to define a word, it is sometimes illustrative of the idea behind a word.

From what I understand, the word "distraction" originally meant to be "pulled apart."

I thought about this for a while. I remember working with an ADHD child once who was chronically "distracted." He could not sit still and could not focus anything. Even when you told him to sit still and listen very carefully, his eyes were still darting all over the place looking for something else.

As I understand it, there is some sort of imbalance in the body of someone that suffers from ADHD. Sometimes, medication is used to bring balance. A person explained it to me this way once. Imagine yourself being split into two, one half going 10 miles an hour and the other half going 50 miles an hour. What the medication does is bring everything into since. A person not suffering ADHD would bounce off the walls from the medication, but a child with ADHD will appear to calm down.

Now the child is able to focus on a single task and not be "distracted" by all the imbalances in his body.

It is amazing the effect a chemical imbalance can have on our life. It can cause hyperactivity, emotional problems, and even near paralysis.

If we have problems spiritually, it may be the result of spiritual ADHD. I can imagine God holding his finger in front of our faces, looking straight at us and saying, "focus in on my words." Yet our eyes are darting all over the place.

What causes spiritual ADHD? It is an imbalance in our lives. We are "distracted" or "pulled apart" in so many directions because of it. We may appear to be focused because we are busy with work, civic activities, entertainment, and a number of other things.

Now don't get me wrong, these things are not wrong in themselves. However, they are very wrong by themselves. It is as the preacher says in Ecclesiastes. Without focus on God, everything is "meaningless." Without focus on God, everything under the sun is nothing more than an endless cycle of distractions that pull us in every direction and no direction.

The solution to spiritual ADHD is a simple one. Try a simple prescription of God's word daily and prayer. As a minimum, take it in the morning before breakfast and in the evening before bed. The beauty of this prescription is that you cannot overdose on it. The more you take the better. So be generous with yourself. Take it at lunch or during your break as well. What better kind of prescription can you have than that?