Read Luke 10 in your Bible. Or you can also read it here.
I was hesitant to share on the Martha and Mary story, found in Luke 10:38-42, because I know it’s a story that has been tackled a lot. But when mulling over the different stories shared in Luke 10, this one kept jumping out at me. The truth is that, even though this story has been written about many times, we still need to hear it. And these days, in our society, I feel that we need to hear it even more. And actually, this story resonates with part of the reason why we are doing this study in the first place.
Martha and Mary were sisters, and Jesus was visiting their home on one particular occasion. Martha was running around tending to preparations while Mary sat at Jesus’ feet. Martha complained about her sister not helping. “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her” (v 41-42).
What a shame that Martha missed out on time with the Savior because she was “distracted,” as it says in verse 40. But honestly, are we any different? We all have things that pull our attention away from God. Life keeps us busy and we can’t seem to find the time to sit with the Lord. Some days we feel like we don’t even have time to catch our breath.
The past two years have changed us all, in some way. The pandemic has taught us to reevaluate our lives. We have learned more about ourselves and what is most important in life. And hopefully we all came out the other side with a clearer vision.
If you have ever had a garden, then you know the importance of removing weeds from the garden. The weeds will take nutrients away from your other plants. And the plants that you intended to grow will wither because they aren’t getting what they need.
Our lives are not much different. When our time and attention is focused on the wrong areas, the good things in life will wither. Many of us these days are constantly busy and in a hurry. During the pandemic we were forced to slow down. And I hope that we all can hang onto that mindset. When we stay busy, our lives pass us by. Do we miss out on the important things in life because we are too busy?
As Christian scholar Dallas Willard once said, “Hurry is the great enemy of spiritual life in our day. You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.”1
We each have to decide what the most important things in our own personal lives are, and we have to choose to make those things a priority. May we learn to let go of the things in our lives that suck our time and attention away from the important things. May we learn to make space for the best things in life. The things that will bring us closer to the Lord and the things that will provide our souls with nourishment.
If you are also participating in the Gratitude Challenge, today is day 81 of 100. Write down at least 10 blessings from your day!
© 2021 Bridget A. Thomas
1 Quote pulled from Soul Keeping: Caring for the Most Important Part of You by John Ortberg