Be Still Know
READ: Luke 1:.41-42 NLT
The Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”
Forgive me for a little pop psychology. It seems to me that some people are naturally activists. They are always up and doing. And then other people are naturally reflective. They want to stand back from life and consider everything carefully. In this beautiful little story from Jesus’ life we meet two sisters who are perfect examples of these different approaches to life.
Martha is the activist. She knows that Jesus is having a very busy ministry and she has decided that he needs a good meal. Martha is sure she is right and is therefore appalled when she spots her sister skiving. Mary is sitting at Jesus’ feet listening carefully to him and, meanwhile, Martha is fuming. She cannot believe it. Mary should be working as hard as she is, and so in a complete strop Martha goes to Jesus and tells him to order Mary to help her. Jesus’ response must have been devastating for Martha. She was so sure that she was right but Jesus gently informs her that she is completely wrong. Mary was the one who got it right. Listening to Jesus was a much higher priority than getting the meal ready.
What are we to conclude from this story? It would be logical to conclude that all housework is wrong! But that was not what Jesus was saying! His point was that this was the wrong time for it. The truth is that activity and reflection are both vitally important. Yesterday we learnt that God wants all of us to turn our love into practical action like the Good Samaritan. And today we have learnt that we all need to recognise the importance of spending time at the feet of Jesus. So if you are an activist like Martha then God wants you to learn the importance of sitting still and listening to him. And if you are naturally reflective like Mary you need
to remember that God is also looking to you to turn your devotion into loving, costly action.
QUESTION: What have you learnt from this story?
PRAYER: Lord help me to learn the importance of both action and sitting at the feet of Jesus. Amen.
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