“Come away with me for a while. The world, with its nonstop demands, can be put on hold. Most people put Me on hold, rationalizing that someday they will find time to focus on Me. But the longer people push Me into the background of their lives, the harder it is for them to find Me” (Sarah Young, Jesus Calling).
How often is this true of all of us? How often do we rationalize away our time with Jesus to attend to whatever “urgent” need arises?
I’ve always been struck by the story of Mary and Martha in Luke 10. You’ve heard the story… Martha is preparing the food and details for the festivities of the day, while her sister Mary is sitting at Jesus’ feet listening to His teaching. There is so much to do for the party, so Martha gets frustrated at her sister for sitting, being still, and listening to Jesus. In her anger, Martha confronts Jesus saying “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
Jesus responds, “Martha, Martha… 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.
Only one thing is needed… to sit at the feet of Jesus and to listen to Him. Would you have stopped working, sat down, and listened to Jesus?
I’m afraid to admit that I would have been Martha in this story. So often, I get “busy” and think that by doing more, I’m accomplishing more for the kingdom and therefore Jesus is glorified. After all, it’s all for Him anyway, right? The rewards of a busy lifestyle feel so immediate and tangible. It’s hard for me to believe that Jesus would rather spend time with me than have me get more done… but that is the complete truth.
Busyness fuels self-sufficiency and at it’s root is nothing short of a prideful heart. Satan can get a stronghold on our lives by getting us to “do” more and “be” less. His voice so quickly convinces us that busyness and productivity lead to life, when they really... they choke it. Busyness is often a symptom of a heart operating independently of God’s strength. Pride results when we give into that temptation and start believing that God needs us to make things happen. As that sin grows, so does our ability to experience the freedom and life-changing power of Christ.
“Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
Jesus calls us to simply “be.” He desires a deep relationship with His children that can only be cultivated through intentional, quiet, listening time with Him. He wants you to put aside that which is urgent to focus on what is truly important. What is more important than your relationship with your Creator and Savior?
Jesus deserves to be in the foreground of our lives, not the background. He desires to be with you, to speak to you, and to pour out His love upon you. The process may be slow, but the reward of a deep, life-fueling relationship with Jesus is unmatched. Come away with Him and you will reap a reward that will never being taken away.