When I was a boy growing up, my favorite food was my grandmothers caramel cake. It was really chocolate cake, with caramel icing. We all called it caramel cake, because without a doubt, the icing was the best part of the cake. My grandmother lived with us from the time I was eight until she died many years later. She could cook like no one I’ve ever met. What she cooked would have been labeled “comfort food” today, but all I knew was that I loved that caramel cake.
I had four ornery uncles who loved to tease me. One day in particular, I remember my youngest uncle stopping by with their kids for a visit. Grandmom had made a caramel cake. My plan of attack on my piece of cake was always the same. I would eat the chocolate cake first, and then would indulge in that incredible caramel icing. On this occasion, as I was about to embark on that caramel icing, my uncle said, “Look at that!” while he pointed to something to my left. Of course, I looked with excitement, anticipating something amazing … only to turn and notice that a good bit of my caramel icing was missing! I still have feelings of bitterness toward him for stealing my icing.
Today I read, “Turn away mine eyes from beholding vanity; and quicken thou me in thy way” (Psalm 119:37). Too often in my life, I am distracted from the way that God wants me to walk. I find myself easily duped by the pull of the world away from what is most important. I want to maintain my focus on the things that God thinks are most important for my life. I want to keep my eyes on the prize that God has for my life … His perfect will. I don’t want to substitute something “good” for that which is “best.” I want to see the people that God wants me to reach, and not become consumed with unimportant activities that rob my time and attention.
The writer of Psalm 119 made the request of God to make him alive to the ways that God had for him. It amazes me that God has the ability to have an individual plan for each of us. His plan for me is not duplicated for you, or anyone else in the world today. It is His plan for me. My hearts cry today to God is that He will help me to maintain my focus on that very plan. I want to be singularly focused on the reason God put me on the earth for this day. God has an amazing will for each of us. The challenge for us is to keep our eyes on the prize, and not to become distracted by the many vanities that surround us every day. My uncle stole my caramel icing that day, but I promise you, from that time forward, when I am near him, I keep my eye on my favorite foods! I am laser focused around that thief (SMILE).