Learn to Slow Down and Listen

“He (Jesus) came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to Him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what He said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made… ‘Martha, Martha’, the Lord answered, ‘you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.’”

Life is so busy! 

Do you relate to Martha? We lead such busy lives. Each day we find ourselves going to work or university, playing sports, performing church roles, catching up with friends, playing on the computer or even watching our favourite TV shows! Busyness seems to be a way of life. Well, it’s busyness that is the arch enemy of our daily, growing relationship with Jesus!

Make time to spend with Jesus

We see Martha was concerned in making sure all the chores and preparations were done for Jesus’ stay. As noble as that may seem, Jesus said all that was needed at that time was that she listen to Him.

We also may fill our time with productive and God-honouring activities. In themselves they may not be detrimental to our relationship with God. However, when we start focusing on them too much, we begin to get distracted and not make time to spend quietly with Jesus. Satan knows he has lost the war with Christians, for children of God have the peace and certain hope, through their faith, that Jesus has given () and promised () them eternal salvation. Satan can’t take that from us, given eternal life and security is a result of God’s work and not our own! So what’s the next best thing Satan can do? Distract us from achieving God’s purposes in our lives. Although we can be distracted through many avenues in life, I believe it’s crucial to understand that we can even be distracted by over-committing to too many godly ministries (specific works for God). It is better to do one ministry well than to do three ministries poorly. God has specific and important roles for all us to do at any one time. We need to spend time with Jesus and listen to His quiet voice () to discern what those ministries would be, and what lessons He would have us learn.

There is no ministry more important than our daily quiet time with Jesus.

Reflection

We need to ask, how are we spending our time? How we spend our time will reflect what’s important to us. Saying we don’t have enough time for something simply means that it’s not important enough to make time for it. If we choose not to spend time with Jesus, than we are saying the other activities are more important to us than Him. If we are serious about our relationship with Jesus, than let’s stop making excuses!

When we all stand before God at the end of our lives, we will have no excuses to hide behind! So let’s choose to make time to spend with Jesus and learn of the eternal riches and blessings He has for us, and not be content with the perishable riches of this world (). Let’s not lead an empty, fruitless life but rather go to Jesus each day and say, ‘here I am, I am ready to listen…’ Only from there will we discover the awesome and fulfilling journey God has for us!

38 Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” 41 But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, 42 but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.

16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 5:24

24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.

11 And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper.

19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.