Monday, November 07, 2011

So Much Work To Do

It is a good choice but discipleship and worship trump serving.

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. 39 Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. 40 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.”

41 But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! 42 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”

John 12:2-3  So they gave a dinner for Him there; Martha was serving them, and Lazarus was one of those reclining at the table with Him. 3 Then Mary took a pound of fragrant oil, pure and expensive nard, anointed Jesus’ feet, and wiped His feet with her hair. So the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil.

Mary and Martha both loved Jesus, their story really is a love story, both ladies were very devoted to what they were doing because of their love for Jesus but still, one of them wasn't doing the preferred thing at that moment.

Martha called Jesus the Messiah just before her brother was brought back from the dead (John 11:27), she was a true believer but she had her priorities mixed up. Jesus is right there in the house with her on two different occasions and both times she chooses to serve. On the same two occasions Mary chose to focus on discipleship and worship rather than working.

The first time that Mary sat at Jesus feet it was like any disciple or follower would, all of the rabbis at the temple had followers that sat at their feet and learned from them, Mary was interested in discipleship rather than serving. The second time that she was at Jesus feet was when she has her own worship service as she anointed Jesus feet with expensive perfume.

There are three good choices, serving, discipleship and worship, we have to make up our minds what the best choice is, which one will be our priority. It seems like it is the same as when the apostle Paul wrote to the church in Corinth about love. Paul said that faith, hope, and love were all good but he made it clear that love was the greatest. (1 Corinthians 13:13)

Any pastor would be thrilled to have a church full of "Mary's and Martha's." The work would be getting done and there would also be lots of discipleship and worship. Service is wonderful to have but it is even more important to chose to worship Jesus and learn to be more like him. After-all Jesus himself told us to go and make disciples and to teach them, he didn't say go and make people that will serve (Matthew 28:19-20). There are a lot of lazy people in the church that need to be serving but their problem is that they probably are not worshiping or growing either.

Serving in my local church is important but I need to keep my priorities straight and remember that worship and discipleship are a notch above serving.

Help me Lord to serve you with my priorities in the right order.