Posted by: pastortomvabeach | January 20, 2015

Thought For The Week January 25, 2015

As we move into this new year, I have been asking myself and asking the Lord what I can do to grow my relationship with Him. In looking at my life I have felt a real desire to hear Him more clearly and to encounter Him more consistently in a real way. In prayer, asking for more of His voice, it became apparent to me that one of the reasons that I don’t hear from the Lord as much and as clearly as I would like is that I haven’t been consistent in making myself available to hear from Him. James tells us that if we draw near to the Lord, He will draw near to me (James 4:8).

Seeking answers to what I see as a problem, I read Daniel Henderson’s weekly devotional which centered on Luke’s account of Jesus’ visit to Martha and Mary’s home in Luke 10. Later, the same morning (Monday this week), I was reading Kyle Idleman’s book, gods at war, in a chapter about the god of achievement and he also cited Martha and Mary. Both noted how important our choices regarding spending time with Jesus will be to our spiritual lives.

Luke writes this: It happened as they went that…a…woman named Martha welcomed (Jesus) into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus] feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.” And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42)

Idleman says, “Here’s the scene: two sisters, one hurrying around frantically with all the preparations, wanting to make the home worthy of Jesus, the other sitting quietly at His feet, listening. If we look at this story through the lens of idolatry there are two significant phrases: Martha was distracted and Mary has chosen. The god of achievement distracts from following Jesus by distracting us with all the things that need to be done (sometimes for Jesus). How often do we live with good intentions of spending time with Jesus and turning our heart toward Him only to find at the end of the day that’s the one thing on our checklist that we never got around to?”

As I read these words, I identified with Martha. I am easily distracted by what “needs to be done” and despite my intentions to just give Jesus time to speak into my life, I wind up finishing my “to do” list but missing time with my Savior. Henderson said, “Martha felt it was more important to serve Jesus in the moment. Mary wanted to seek Jesus. Martha wanted to do something for Him. Mary wanted to learn something from Him.” How often do I get so busy doing things, good things, “for Jesus”, that I miss learning from Him? I think that sometimes I forget that Jesus already did everything that is necessary for us to be together and all the stuff I am doing, while it is an important part of a God-glorifying life, is not life itself.

Henderson goes on to say, “Jesus described the real issue in this way: ‘But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part.’ Her clear sense of the right priorities led her to a choice. We all know that life is always about choices. We are responsible for our choices and must remember that much is at stake with each responsible decision. We all can choose, like Mary. Simply put, she embraced the spiritual responsibility of a true disciple.”

As I read the two explanations of how one misses Jesus, I had to admit that feeling that I don’t hear from Him as I would like and don’t encounter His presence as much as I should, is very likely my own doing, my own choice. In that moment, yesterday, I asked the Lord to empower me to choose to be with Him every day. I realized that there is a lot of discretionary time, even after I’ve finished my “to do” list that I could set aside for Jesus. I’ve decided to make that time a priority each day and just “sit at His feet”, so to speak. It may be reading the Word, praying, just listening, reading a good Christian book, but it’s going to be His.

It is difficult to share this with all the readers. Friends, I’m doing this to say that maybe all of us need to find a way to draw closer to the Lord. How much time do you spend just sitting at Jesus’ feet? Is there a portion of time during the day that you could give to Him? Just asking.

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