Monday, May 24, 2010

Only One Thing is Needed

"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her. Luke 10: 41-42. 

The story of Martha and Mary was one I desperately needed to be reminded of during my morning devotional time. Too often I find myself rushing about worried and upset over many things. I'm not alone. Most of the women I know have Martha personalities. 

Martha had opened her home to Jesus and his disciples. She obviously had a servant's heart and the gift of hospitality, but she became so busy and distracted by all the preparations that had to be made that she grew irritable and resentful of her sister, Mary, who instead of helping her was sitting at the feet of Jesus listening to what he was saying. We see this clearly in the following passage of scripture: 

"But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!" Luke 10: 40.

I find being distracted to be a huge problem for many women today, myself included. We get distracted by what seems so urgent but really isn't, and it's those things that keep us from doing what truly is important. We are admired if our days are full and busy. We are seen as strong women if we can multitask and juggle many roles. We tend to take on much more than we can handle, and then find ourselves stressed out and irritable. Like Martha, we become resentful when we feel overwhelmed and nobody is helping us. Often what we are stressed out about is the chaos that we created by taking on more than we can handle, and  never allowing ourselves any time to rest and sit and listen to what Jesus is saying to us. 

Schedules that are overflowing allow no time for what is truly important. We must remember that Jesus said only one thing is needed. What is that one thing? Time spent with Him. Time listening to Him speak to us through His word. Time to seek Him. When our life comes to an end here on this earth the only thing that will matter is our relationship with Jesus. Do we truly know Him? Are we taking time to listen to what He is teaching us? Do we apply His teaching to our everyday lives? Do our daily schedules reflect that He is first in our life, or do our schedules reveal days running over with a flurry of activity with no mention of Jesus? Are we allowing ourselves time to rest in His presence? When we find ourselves rushing about, distracted by many preparations, upset, and worried, I pray we will all remember clearly the words of Jesus: "only one thing is needed."

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