How often have we heard the instruction given …..”One at a time please”?
The teacher surrounded by inquisitive children with a question.
The Mom surrounded by children hungry for their dinner.
Doing one thing at a time is the opposite from juggling many tasks. Having simplicity and order in life can be a great blessing.
ONE is singular, ONE is specific, ONE is separate.
ONE is on it’s own, it’s the first PRIMARY number and it signifies importance, prominence and independence. ONE stands on its own.
There are occasions to pause and ask ourselves about what is of most importance or prominence in our life, especially when our modern world asks so much and moves so fast.
There are 16 times that the phrase, ONE THING, appears in scripture. Of those, three stand out to me, as providing important questions of us, and an opportunity to assess the simplicity of our faith.
• ‘ONE THING I ask of the Lord’
This ONE THING that David speaks about is his ONE DESIRE.
If you could ask God for one thing only, what would it be?
David’s response seems clear. He is saying ‘I DESIRE God above all else’
Psalm 27:4 (The Message) I’m asking God for one thing, only one thing: To live with him in his house my whole life long. I’ll contemplate his beauty; I’ll study at his feet.
As David writes this the Temple is still UNBUILT (though the Tabernacle exists). David, I believe, is not thinking of a material structure, but a place in his soul where he meets God.
Psalm 139:7-8 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
As he writes he feels besieged and under attack, and realizes his only safe place is the presence of God.
Psalm 27:5 For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock.
His ONE request of God is that he might know and experience the awesomeness of His presence, and he SEEKS this with singular determination.
He’s putting God first in his world!
Seeking anything first above a desire for him is to be living life in the wrong order and maybe the cause of some of the stresses, anxieties and struggles we have.
Matthew 6:33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
What ONE THING do you desire?
What ONE THING would you ask of God?
• ‘ONE THING I know’
This man we meet here could see things differently. He had ONE FOCUS.
This man was born blind. Jesus heals him by putting mud on his eyes and telling him to go and wash it off at the pool of Siloam. The man hadn’t seen Jesus as his healing took place after washing the mud off.
He is asked by the Pharisees, ‘where is this man?’ and his answer was ‘I DON”T KNOW’
His Parents were asked by the Pharisees how he was healed and who healed him and their answer was ‘WE DON’T KNOW’.
But the man finally said…..’ONE THING I do know. I was blind but now I see’
There is a lot in life (and faith) we don’t know. There is a lot we will never know but there is truth that it is so important that we do know.
If you could truly understand one thing only, what would it be?
This man didn’t quite understand what had happened to him but what he did know is that he was a changed man.
John 9:25 (The Message) I know one thing for sure…..
Certainty and security in life comes form this
1 John 3:1-2 See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.
We can know who we are and who we will be! And surely this has to be the ONE THING we know with certainty.
Our FOCUS in life is ultimately determined by those things of which we are certain.
• ‘ONE THING I do’
Paul was able to demonstrate that he had ONE PURPOSE in life.
If you could do one thing with your life, what would it be?
John 4:34 “My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work”
Jesus had ONE THING to do and that was to fulfill the will of God, the purpose God sent him into the world to complete.
Paul is clear about his life’s purpose…
• There is more to do – 3:12 Not that I have already obtained all this….
• There is more than has been done – 3:13 Forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead…..
• There is ONE purpose for the future – 3:14 I press on toward the goal
We have all said at some time or another…’I have so much to do…’
A new 21st Century cliché is ‘multi-tasking’, when you can perform various operations or actions at the same time. Unfortunately you are in danger of never do any one of then as well as they could be done.
Multi-tasking leads to distraction.
What is the ONE THING above all that is the purpose of your life.
Psalm 40:8 (David) I desire to do your will, my God
The will of God is that ONE, singular, specific and separate purpose he has for YOU.
Simplify YOUR life by deciding what matters most in your DESIRES, FOCUS and PURPOSE.
To be honest it all reduces neatly down to ONE THING……
Psalm 27:8 (The Message) When my heart whispered, "Seek God," my whole being replied, "I'm seeking him!"