Scripture Reading: Luke 10:38-42
As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.” (Lk. 10:38-42 NLT)
Distractions are something we live with every day of our lives. Drivers are distracted by messages coming in on smart phones, and the corresponding attempt to answer by texting a message in return. Billboards are a nuisance distraction along with flashing lights, sirens, and speeding drivers. Social media is a major distraction and pulls us away from more important functions. Mainstream media is filled with distracting advertisements intended to lure us into spending money we don’t have. It all sounds easy until the end of the month when the bills become due.
When Jesus came to Martha’s home, he faced a similar situation. Mary, the younger sister of Martha, chose to sit at Jesus’ feet in devotion and worship, while Martha busied herself in the kitchen. It wasn’t long before Martha got bogged down with her preparations and stormed into Jesus’ presence to complain about Mary’s lack of help. This is typical of “big sister” lording it over the younger sibling. It is apparent that Martha allowed the distraction of making a “big splash” for Jesus to cause her to miss an opportunity for worship.
Jesus, knowing that pride had overtaken Martha’s better sense of judgment, seized the moment to point out the distraction that led to her complaine by saying, “Martha, Martha, you are concerned with doing, but Mary has chosen the more important part of being” (Luke 10:41-42 paraphrase mine). Jesus commented Mary for her devotion, and mildly rebuked Martha for her busyness.
Likewise, we face daily distractions that tend to pull us away from devotion or service. I have found that starting my day with Jesus and the Word of God provides the jump start needed for a successful day. Spending time with Jesus in prayer and meditation enhances my relationship with Him and allows time to pause and listen. Just as Martha needed to learn to put aside the distractions around her, so too, believers today need to learn that service is an extension of devotion to Christ. Our “orders for the day” come through quiet meditation away from the distractions of the world.
Don’t let the distractions of this world keep you from taking time to sit at the feet of Jesus.
Prayer: Dear Lord, help me put aside the distractions that seek to pull me away from your word.