Making Better Choices!
Life is full of choices, we choose daily: the clothes we are going to wear that day, the colors, and the food we are going to eat (here you may make a choice that is healthier than others). When you buy a phone or computer, you choose what works better for you financially but you also about the quality. We make decisions based on what we know, our preferences, based on our research, what is more suitable for us.
When it comes to serving God, or even being a Christian person we make choices that are better than others. We may make Christ-centered choices, or self-centered ones. We may make choices that are pleasing to God and others that are not. This is what we see in a story where Jesus explained to some people what it means to make the better choice. Read text Luke 10:38-42
Jesus and his disciples came to a village called Bethany where a woman named Martha opened her home to Jesus. Martha welcomed Jesus and his disciples to her home. She had a sister named Mary and Lazarus was their brother.
The text clearly points out the different choices these two sisters made while having Jesus in their home.
Mary chose to sit at Jesus’ feet. (v.39) this is very interesting and awkward in that culture to have women sitting at the feet of teachers or rabbis. To be a disciple in those days meant to spend time with your teacher, listening to his instructions. The text says that Mary sat at the Lord’s feet listening to his words (teaching).
Martha was preoccupied with all the preparations. (v.39) Literal translation (ESV, KJV) read, she was distracted (pulled away) with much serving.
Maybe you can relate to Martha. She was a devoted servant, this is what we see in the text. Here she felt overwhelmed with all the work that needed to be done.
Have you ever been pulled away by much service and ministry that you miss the main thing?
Martha complained to Jesus because Mary neglected her and the service that needed to be done. (v.40) Have you ever complained about someone because they were not serving according to your expectation? The best thing you can do is to take your complaint to Jesus, but when you do, don’t get mad with his response.
Martha took her anxiety and complaint to Jesus: (v.40) she went to Jesus and said. Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone (ESV) “Don’t you care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself.” NIV “Tell her then to help me.”
Jesus’ response (v.41-42)
Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. May has chosen the good portion which will not be taken away from her.” Mary has chosen what is better and it will not be taken away from her.
What was that portion that Mary chose? What was better than what Martha was doing?
To spend time in Jesus’ presence, to sit at his feet to listen to him. (Quality time with Jesus was more important than serving Jesus).
Are you being pulled away serving God that you neglect to spend time with him? This was Martha’ problem. Martha’s problem wasn’t service, it was forgetting the most important thing due to her much serving. She became overwhelmed and anxious because of the amount of things she wanted to get ready; this lead to her becoming angry with her sister. That’s why Jesus said, you are upset and anxious about lots of things, but one thing is necessary? Mary made the best choice because she chose to spend time with Jesus.
We may be so busy serving God that we neglect to spend time in his presence. Remember what we have been talking about. Not because you go to a worship service guarantees that you actually worship. You may be serving God and not necessarily know him. Don’t let serving God keep you from knowing God in a more intimate level.
Serving God is good, but spending quality time with him is better.
Illustration: a couple was struggling in their marriage, he was involved in the church band, and provided service to other churches with his music. They got invited to a wedding and she really wanted him to go with her, but he had band practice and never took the time off. To play in the band is good, but going with your wife to that wedding is better.
–A young man and his family have grown in the church. The man is very involved in church praise and worship. He is super talented, his kids have been slipping away from church. They no longer know what they believe. This man has been neglecting his family for doing ministry in the church. Do you think this pleases God? The answer is no. That man’s first ministry is his family which he has been neglecting thinking that he is serving Jesus. He is missing the better choice.
Serving God is good, but spending quality time with him is better. It is in your siting at his feet that you learn how to truly serve him. It is spending quality time with Jesus that you get to truly know him.
Spending quality time with Jesus (sitting at his feet) give you a Christ-centered perspective to your worship and service.
It will increase your faith.
Nothing compares to the greatness of knowing you Lord. Third day. Php.3:8