Thursday, November 29, 2018

The Distraction Of The Season

Luke 10:41-42 41 The Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but one thing is necessary. Mary has made the right choice, and it will not be taken away from her.”

In this well known encounter told in Luke, chapter ten, Jesus and His disciples have dropped in on Mary and Martha, two sisters who were friends and followers of Jesus. Martha is busying herself being the perfect hostess. In her day the women were expected to wait on the guests and they were judged by how well they did so. For a respected, important guest they were not not only expected to wait on them but to wow them with hospitality. Meanwhile, her sister Mary was sitting along with the disciples, at Jesus’ feet, listening intently to what He had to say. Because of this Martha is frustrated. Why should she be doing all the work! She asks Jesus to tell Mary to get up and give her a hand!

The response of Jesus went past the superficial and the cultural expectations of the day, past that present situation and straight to the heart of Martha. In verse 41, He says: “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things ...” We know that in this passage Martha is aggravated by what she sees as her sister’s distraction, but Jesus seems to go deeper here. He says that Martha worries about many things. The scripture doesn’t tell us exactly what Martha was worried about, but you get the sense that she worried a lot and not always about the things that mattered.

What gets you worried and upset? Very often we get worried, upset and distracted by the wrong things in this life. I love decorating for Christmas and seeing the tree all lit up. I love even more watching the children’s face light up when they see the decorations all in place. But it is possible to take it too far. I’m not talking about putting up so many lights that Watts Bar has to start up another nuclear reactor! I’m talking about when decorating becomes a competition, either with your neighbors or against an unreachable standard you see on Instagram. Very often people mistake photo-shopped pictures of perfect decorations, meals or outfits as reality and then stress when they look in the mirror and don't see the same thing or they look around their house and see a tree with moldy handmade Christmas ornaments from their kid's kindergarten instead of a professionally dressed tree.

Wrong distractions take our eyes off of Jesus and onto things that are either sins, problems, or simply worthless. When you get distracted by these things you are elevating them in your life and giving them a place of honor. You are saying they are more important to you than God.

It easy to get distracted and stressed during the silly season. Sometimes it is worry over problems - many of which you won’t even remember having next year, a few of which are serious but none are bigger or more important than God. Even worse is when you look at your problems and say, God, I can’t worship you now, I have too many problems. That’s like saying you can’t go to the doctor because you are sick or you can’t go to the dentist because you have a toothache! You are denying yourself the cure and the relief when you focus on the problem more than on God!

Jesus gives us the answer in verse 42 when He says Mary has made the right choice. What was her choice? Sitting at the feet of Jesus and focusing on Him.

Let me ask you; do you want to stand before God one day and say decorations are more important than you? Do you want to stand before your creator and say my image is more important than you? Do you want to stand before your Savior and see those nail-scarred hands and say my sin was more important than you? When you let these things distract you from God then that is what you are doing. What have you given a place of honor in your life that is distracting you from God?

To discover more, visit Oak Grove Baptist Church

No comments:

Post a Comment