Summary: Devotion to Christ
We have said it many times and a lot of ways: You will never know real peace in your life without accepting Jesus Christ as Lord.
In his book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey coined the phrase, “The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.”
Jesus taught with authority and power when He was on the earth. He would use simple stories to teach truth that would transform the listeners. Long before Stephen Covey, Jesus pointed to the fact that there is a main thing in following Him. We read about this in the story of two sisters who invited Jesus and His disciples to their home.
“ 38As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!"
41"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, 42but only one thing is needed.[f] Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her." Luke 10:38-42 NIV
One thing is absolutely necessary if we are to live healthy and useful Christ following lives. Do you know what the one thing is? Knowing the one thing is not an easy one, two, three, systems approach. Knowing the one thing is to commit to paying attention to Jesus and His words.
Mary and Martha were entertaining Jesus. Martha, a warm hostess, busies herself with preparations for a meal for Jesus and His disciples. Mary, however, sat at His feet and listened to all the wonderful things He had to say. Martha said to herself, "What a privilege to prepare a meal for Him!" and Mary said, "What a privilege to sit at His feet!", and they were both right in thinking that. But Martha felt that Mary was unreasonable in leaving her to serve up the meal, and she even questioned the Lord for allowing Mary to sit there while there was work to be done, verses 39-40. Then it was that Jesus spoke very tenderly to Martha, calling her by her name and saying, "You are careful and troubled about many things: but one thing is absolutely necessary, verse 41-42, and Mary had chosen that "one thing"! This, then, is the first requirement for every Christian: not service, not working, but connecting with Jesus and learning from Him, verse 39.
1. This “one thing” is natural. What does it mean to “sit at His feet?”
The scripture that we read said Mary was sitting at the Lord’s feet listening to what He was saying. Every human being on this planet is “sitting at the feet of something.” They are tuned into someone or some group that lays out for them what they are to wear, or how they are supposed to act. If you don’t think that is true tune in to those considered famous by our culture. Do you know that People magazine has a section every week showing a cross section of Hollywood types all wearing the same styles? Then I guess some of us who don’t know any better are supposed to run out and find the cheap versions of the same thing and buy them so we can look like the rich and the famous. This year it’s this style and next year it will be something else. It is a never ending exercise.
“In this life you sometimes have to choose between pleasing God and pleasing man. In the long run it’s better to please God. . . . He’s more apt to remember.” —Harry Kemelman
Everyone worships and gives themselves to something. The key is for us to make Jesus first in our lives. (His word, His love, His principles, His wisdom, His compassion, His Spirit.) Here’s what “sitting at His feet” implies:
It implies RECEPTION.
In verse 38, we read that Martha received Jesus into her house, and Mary received Him also. Before Mary could sit at the Saviour’s feet she must have welcomed Him into her presence. To sit at His feet and listen to His words implies that this reception has taken place. The question today is have you really received the Lord Jesus into your spiritual heart as definitely and as truly as Martha and Mary received Him into their house?
“12Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” John 1:12.