“But the Lord answered and said to her, ‘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'” (Luke 10:41-42, NASB).
I have a busy life. Busy, busy, busy. I have all these important things I need to do. I suppose I’m an important guy because everything I do or need to do is so important!
But, I’ve got so many important things to do that there’s not enough time to do them all. And, it seems that I’m adding things to my “To Do” list faster than I’m checking things off of it. The list of incompletes is growing faster than the list of accomplishments.
In this busy, busy, busy life of mine, doing all these important things I am doing can distract me from the main reason I am doing them. All my busyness can distract me from the one thing that really matters. All my busyness can cause me to lose focus on Jesus!
Dr. Luke provides us with a little glimpse into the personal lives of some of Jesus’ closest friends. One day Martha welcomed Jesus into their home. John tells us that Jesus was a close friend of the family of Lazarus, Mary, and Martha in the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead in John 11. So, having Jesus come to visit was certainly a special occasion in Martha’s home, but perhaps not an unusual event.
So, on this occasion of a visit by Jesus to their home, Martha was busying herself with preparations for the crowd of people that most certainly assembled whenever Jesus came for a visit. Meanwhile her sister Mary was sitting, probably with the men, listening to Jesus teach.
When Martha complained to Jesus about Mary, Jesus lovingly chastised her. He told her she was distracted by all her busyness from what she really needed. She needed to give all her attention to Him and the words He was saying instead of busying herself with accommodating her guests. She needed to be with Jesus, not in the kitchen cooking!
So, Jesus had to remind her of what’s really important. He had to tell her to get her priorities right.
But, it almost seems incomprehensible that Jesus would come to visit at their home and Martha would use the time in making preparations rather than being with Jesus! Yet, I am exactly the same way. I get busy attending to all the important matters of my life and then my busyness distracts me from what I really need: living in the presence of God, walking with Him and allowing the Holy Spirit to guide me in all my undertakings.
We seem to need constant reminding about what really matters. We must continually regain focus on Jesus because we allow the affairs of this present life to distract us from doing those things which help us maintain an eternal perspective.
But, there’s only one thing that is needed, only one thing that really matters in this present life and for our eternal future: knowing Jesus and having an everlasting, personal relationship with Him.
And you know what? When you stay focused on the One that really matters, then it has a way of filtering out all those things that don’t really matter!
For all these things the nations of the world eagerly seek; but your Father knows that you need these things. But seek His kingdom and these things will be added to you…For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Luke 11:30-31, 3, NASB)