November 6, 2014

Read: Luke 10:38-42

Most of us have no problem identifying with one or the other of these two women. In this account, Jesus was gently rebuking Martha, and giving praise to her sister, Mary.  Martha complained that her sister was just sitting, listening to Him teach, while Martha was having to do all the work. Certainly, Jesus was aware of the need to make a meal ready, and to see to the serving of it; and no doubt, He was appreciative of the hospitality offered to Him in their home in Bethany.  He seemed to simply be pointing out to Martha how “distracted with all her preparations" she was, even to the exclusion of the "one thing that is necessary” - sitting at the feet of Jesus in order to be fed spiritual food.

We, like Martha, recognize our need for food for our physical bodies.  How many of us are aware of our need to be fed spiritually?  Our stomachs reminds us when they are empty.  Would that our hearts would growl due to the emptiness there! God reminds us that we cannot live by bread alone, but we need to be fed the manna of the Word.  Jesus is the "bread of life" (John 6:35) that satisfies our hunger for soul food.  In order to grow and be sustained spiritually, we must feast on both the "milk" and the "meat" of God's Word. (Hebrews 5:12-14; I Corinthians 3:2; I Peter 2:2).  We do this through preaching and teaching, but primarily by personal study, prayer, and reflection.  Some refer to this as a quiet time.  We are admonished to: "Be still and know that He is God." (Ps. 46:10).  How often in our busy lives are we actually still?  It's a rare thing!

I'm more like Mary, in that I can sit and study for hours, even to the exclusion of doing other needful things.  My husband is a doer, like Martha.  It’s much more of a discipline for him to sit. He can think of any number of things that he could be doing, mostly for others.  

There needs to be a balance in all our lives, because we're called to do both - sit and serve.  These verses in Luke remind us, however, that sitting must precede serving. God is more interested in our "being" than in our "doing".   

Pray: 

Adoration: God is holy, mighty, gracious, and merciful. Spend time declaring your love for Him and expressing your thoughts of praise and worship. 

Confession: Ask God to search your heart and reveal any areas of unconfessed sin. Acknowledge these to the Lord and thank Him for His forgiveness. 

Thanksgiving: Express your thankfulness to God for the blessings He has given you. When we consider that we deserve punishment because of our sinfulness, and instead God gives to us His love and mercy, our only response should be one of thankfulness. 

Supplication: Petition God for growth in your desire to know and please Him.  Ask Him to give you a greater love and commitment to Him.  Ask Him for the grace to glorify Him in your life.  Intercede on behalf of your local church, other churches, evangelism and discipleship ministries and other concerns you may have.  Offer prayers for your activities for this day and any special concerns you might have.