After a long but rewarding afternoon, I finally sat this evening to pray. And no sooner than I had, my daughter who should have been sleeping started to cry. And then I started to remember all of the things that I had to do, the lists that I told myself I would accomplish before the weekend was over – checks to balance, things to write, floors to clean and so on the story goes.
Instead of tuning into God, I was quickly losing focus. But just before I started to feel overwhelmed, a favorite passage of mine came to mind in Luke 10.38-42. Those who are familiar with the story already know that this is the passage about Martha and Mary. Martha is going about busily doing her housework while Mary opts instead to sit at the feet of Jesus. A very upset Martha begs Jesus to have Mary pick up the slack but instead of appealing to her, Jesus responds:
Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things, but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part which shall not be taken away from her.
Let me tell you, I have read this passage dozens of times, but today I was struck by it a little differently. Usually, I find myself getting caught up in the fact that Mary chose to sit at the feet of Jesus, and that I should likewise choose, more often than I do, to do the same. But today, I realized, that Mary’s choice was something that would never be taken away from her, that it was always guaranteed. Her decision to worship God and thereby enter into his rest was something that at the end of the day she would still have, no one or nothing – not death, sickness, or even Martha’s mouth could take that away from her!
And when push comes to shove, all of the things that I have to do and that you have to do, will someday disappear. The house that I feel needs to be cleaned, the bank account that needs reconciling, the work that I really should do so that I can continually prove myself worthy in my profession will one day disappear – such is the nature of life. But one thing that will not, is my worship of God. I will always have that, both in this life and in the next.
Coincidentally, I was listening to this song, Secret Place, by Karen Clark Sheard at the same time that I was reading this passage. It is a wonderful worship song. I encourage you to take a few minutes to put down whatever it is that you are doing and come sit at the feet of Jesus, like Mary did, and worship God from the very depths of your inner being.
Let us remember to consistently pursue the presence of God. The busyness of life so often competes with the one thing that is not only necessary, but the only thing that we can hold on to. Carry this with you into your week, and every time you start to feel a little overwhelmed with the lists and needs of life, put them on pause and come sit at the feet of Jesus. He will be waiting for you!