Only one thing matters

“Jesus continued from there toward Jerusalem and came to another village. Martha, a resident of that village, welcomed Jesus into her home. Her sister, Mary, went and sat at Jesus’ feet, listening to Him teach.  Meanwhile Martha was anxious about all the hospitality arrangements.” Luke 10:38-40 The Voice Translation

The New International Version phrases Luke 10:40 this way, “…But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made.”

I have had a lot on my mind lately. Thoughts that take the form of mental notes and lists. The lists become more detailed as new issues come to the fore-front. The issues turn into prayer requests, but because I’m so busy trying to stay on top of everything, my prayers sound more like tentative appeals for assistance rather than faith-emboldened petitions.

Anxious thoughts of work, home and family start to occupy a larger amount of space in my head, and as a consequence, I find myself running from one thing to the next in a desperate attempt to hold it all together.

The Lord knows I’m weakening. He hears my pleas for help and mercy. He knows what I need most, and what I need most is time with Him.

So why do I find it so hard to stop and sit in His presence? I’ve been here so many times before…

My only excuse is that I tend to err on the side of Martha-ism. I say that I want to be more like Mary but the truth is I like being busy. I like planning and preparing. I like to do things…often to my spiritual detriment.

As I said, the Lord sees me and He knows my anxious thoughts. I have been crying out for help and relief. I have spent a sleep disturbed couple of weeks just burdened with things! And then I opened my email this past Thursday and read this:

“What are the things that are leaving you in distress right now? Bring them in heartfelt prayer before the Lord. Run into the arms of your Father instead, your true place of rest and peace.” Brian Simmons and Your TPT Team (The Passion Translation)

“I will be your Sabbath rest”

“Many are restless in this hour. They long for lasting change. They are puzzled over what seems like delay in their advancement. Restlessness comes when you take your eyes off of Me. I call you to rest in My peace and watch Me work. I will be your Sabbath Rest.

“The distractions are many for My chosen ones. Many voices and many activities can confuse your heart, but in Me there is a peace that transcends all understanding. I give to you, not logic, but peace. My peace can never be disturbed and robbed from you.

“The peace of your world comes and goes and is easily troubled. Come into My ocean of peace and I will speak to you the words you need to hear for what is about to come.

“You no longer have a place in the world. Your place is with Me. Step into Me and I will give the place destined for you. My mansions filled with peace and glory await your entrance. There are many resting places in Me. I long to be your undisturbed peace in a time of trouble and rapid change. Come closer to Me and I will come closer to you. The plans I have for you require that you focus on Me and not your shifting circumstances. Confine yourself to Me, as a prisoner of love, and you will be nourished by the eternal.”

Psalm 27:4-6 The Passion Translation

“Here’s the one thing I crave from God, 
The one thing I seek above all else:
I want the privilege of living with him 
Every moment in his House,
Finding the sweet loveliness of his face;
Filled with awe, delighting in his glory and grace. 
I want to live my life so close to him 
That he takes pleasure in my every prayer.
In His shelter in the day of trouble, 
That’s where you’ll find me,
For he hides me there in his holiness.
He has smuggled me into his secret place 
Where I’m kept safe and secure.”

I SO needed this! I so want this!

This morning before turning on the TV, before starting breakfast for family, before cleaning the house or planning my day, I took time to sit with Jesus and listen to His heart. I gave all my cares and worries into His capable hands and set out to float in His ocean of peace.

What is more needful, more wonderful that that?

So I will leave you with the last part of the Martha & Mary saga, and hope that you, too, will choose the One thing…

“…But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

“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.” Luke 10:40-42 NIV


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