“Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”
And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her” (Lk 10:38-42)
This is a call to restore your ‘quiet time with God’. Nothing should replace it!
The scene above describes an incident that happened during one of Jesus’ visits at their house. It seems that Marta was the oldest; for she behaves like ‘the landlady’. She is the one who opens her house to Jesus and welcomes Him. Jesus came with His disciples. That makes at least thirteen men. Immediately she knew that work has to be done in the kitchen to feed so many hungry and tired men. I am sure she was a strong woman and a good administrator. She quickly planned her menu and went about getting all things ready. She may have had some friends and neighbors whom she could call in times of need. So the kitchen became a busy place, almost like a battle field. Marta was the queen of the kitchen, no doubt about it. She was telling everybody what to do when suddenly… she discovers that her younger sister was missing. ‘Mary…Where is Mary?’
Mary needs a rebuke- she thought…She went to look for her and to her surprise, she saw Mary sited and the feet of Jesus listening to His words. She may have tried to make some noise to call her attention, but Mary did not even look around. All her attention was focused on the face of Christ, listening to His words. This could have been an embarrassing situation, for women were not supposed to be found in the ‘boys club’. But Mary did not care about the opinions of others. She has been waiting for God to visit her humble home… He came. Now she will not waste any second on any other thing, except to hear what Jesus has to say.
When Martha failed to call Mary’s attention that she is needed to the kitchen, frustrated, she broke the ‘protocol’ and went in to ‘disturb’ Jesus. She complained about Mary’s ‘irresponsible’ attitude. That is when Jesus gently rebukes her. He told her that she is too worried about too many things. He also said that Mary has chosen the only thing truly needed, He called it ‘the good part’ and it will not be taken away from her. Martha was surprised at the rebuke…also, what is that thing needed thing that Mary has chosen?
Yes, it is good to serve God in the home, in the kitchen, as a wife and as a mother. It is also good to serve God in the church activities. But nothing else should make you ignore your quiet time with the Lord, the study of the Bible and the daily holy activity of prayer. The intimate fellowship with the Lord is always the needed thing, the first thing and the good part. Please note that it is much easier to be busy for Jesus than to sit at His feet listen to His word. It is easier to get distracted than to maintain a quiet holy heart in the presence of God. All things do not have the same value. Be sure you have your priorities right!