Luke 10:41-42 “And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.”
Multi-tasking is highly overrated. The choices of what to do when becomes very cumbersome when all clamour for your attention. it becomes very frustrating when there are many fires burning and not enough resources to put them out.
We all struggle with having right priorities in our life.
The ability to choose the right thing at the right time is an ongoing battle we all must face.
Some wrestle with putting God first. Others are so one-sided that they neglect responsibilities in roles given to them by God. I wish I could tell you that there is a surefire recipe that will lock your decisions into place every time. What I can tell you, is that there are guidelines and principles to follow that will make the choices easier.
Martha and Mary and the account we read here in Luke, is a prime example.
If we simply examine the service we are in for God or to God.
For God means that I am choosing what I want to do for Him thinking I know best how to serve Him and to please Him.
To God means I submit to the Holy Spirit of God and do that which He leads me to do.
Martha saw the dishes; Mary realized she will only be in His presence a short time.
Martha wanted recognition for her contribution, Mary knew that any and all work will be waiting when Jesus moved on from their home.
So, a question to ask ourselves:
“Is what I am doing right now what God directed me to do, or is it what I desire to do?”
Monday through Friday from 8-5, I have a committment to my workplace to fulfill my role for which I was hired. While I am there working, my company does not pay me to surf the internet, work on personal projects, or go about seeing what is the least amount of work I can do to get by.
Luke 10:7 “And in the same house remain, eating and drinking such things as they give: for the labourer is worthy of his hire. Go not from house to house”
I must also realize that who I am and what I do reflects on my Savior.
We are to view our workplace as our mission field. When at work, I am supposed to work. I will interact with people on a daily basis. I must utilize my breaks and lunches to speak to others about the Lord. To use work time may seem spiritual at the time, but those who hired me did not hire an evangelist – they hired me to do a specific job for which they are paying.
These priorities come at us every day seemingly in waves. If we don’t have a way to handle them, we feel as if we are drowning underneath everything coming at us all at once.
In the account we read, Martha saw the housework and decided that if she could just finish the dishes, she would be able to enjoy sitting at Jesus’ feet like Mary. Her thoughts quickly turned and jealousy arose. She wanted to be where Mary was enjoying the fellowship, friendship and presence of the Master.
It boiled over inside her and she spoke to Jesus:
Luke 10:40 “But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.”
Pride reared its ugly head as she may have wanted recognition, or felt compelled that her house needed to be in order before she could enjoy her company.
Secondly, I must ask myself:
“Am I fulfilling my responsibilities according to how God would desire of me?”
I have many roles:
Child of God, husband, father, son to my parents, brother to my siblings, assistant pastor to my church, director to the RU Recovery addictions program, superintendent to the adult Sunday school teachers, nursing home pastor to the one of the many our church ministers to every month.
As a staff member, I oversee the jail ministry, the teaching at the Adult Rehab Center for the Salvation Army, and our prayer minstry. I lead congregational songs for our midweek service, sing in our choir, play in our orchestra, sing baritone and travel in a gospel quartet, also solos and group specials for services and write a daily blog. So, you can see, there are a few things that require my attention.
Acquiring an eternal perspective for each has given me a sense of priority that I allow God to guide and direct. I must place each role in an order that is biblically correct. For example; I will be accountable for my role as a husband and father more than that of any church role I fill.
If I lose my marriage or my family because of any role I fill in my church, I did not apply right priorities to the roles I have. This became evident one day when my daughter asked: “Daddy, do you love the church more than you love me?”
I had to step back and realize what it was I was teaching my children. All the ‘I love you’s’ meant nothing if it wasn’t backed up with actual time spent and attention given. Our pastor challenges us to ‘date’ our children. That time we spend allows us to talk, laugh and have fun. But it also lets them know that they have Dad’s undivided attention to talk about whatever they want.
I do not have the perfect recipe for how to make it happen or ‘keep all the balls in the air’. But I do realize that some of those balls are made of glass and if I were to allow one of those to fall, it would be devastating.
Maybe you are like me in needing to step away from some things so that I can better fill the roles I am called to be. I cannot let my own pride cloud that judgment. Only God knows what I should do – He is the One who foreordained the works for me before time began.
Ephesians 2:10 “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”
Today is a bit unfiltered, but I always desire to remain transparent and honest because I believe it is relatable and helpful. Let me know your comments!