Choosing the Good Part

But the Lord answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only a few things are necessary, really only one, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her." Luke 10:41-42 (NASB)

There are times in our lives when events seem to spiral out of our ability to keep up. I experienced a time like that when we moved into our new home. We had built it ourselves and moved my husband’s elderly parents in with us. His father was an invalid and his mother was a semi-invalid. Our daughter’s wedding was scheduled a month later. I had the total care of his parents during the day, and since my daughter was far away in college, the entire responsibility of the wedding details. I found I had no time to steal away for the Bible reading and prayer that had been the mainstay of my life. As the wedding drew near I found myself doing laundry with tears in my eyes and a deep burden on my heart. “Lord, here I am in such a critical place in my life and I have no time to spend with you in all this responsibility and activity. I feel so pulled and so lacking your peace.” I heard that still small voice that I so dearly loved saying simply, “Carol, I am bigger than your quiet time.” Suddenly I saw what had been happening to me. I had allowed myself to focus on the temporary loss of my “set apart” times with Him. A false sense of guilt had obscured the fact that I could commune with Him as I went about my day. I had a wealth of Scripture in my heart; nothing could keep me from enjoying His presence but a legalistic focus on the form. He knew at my first opportunity I would be back at His feet sitting and soaking in His presence.

That whole scenario was out of my control. Unfortunately I have scheduled myself into similar spots since then. During those times I’ve heard His gentle rebuke from Luke 10:41-42, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only a few things are necessary, really only one, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her." At heart I am a Mary, but residing in the same house is a Martha who has to be reminded to let go of the unnecessary and choose the good part.

I invite you to do a heart check. Who is in control in your life? Is it Mary or Martha? If your circumstances are truly out of your control, the last thing I want to do is put guilt on you. But please be honest… have you taken on more than you should and is it crowding out the good part? Ask the Lord to show you what to let go. He will. He misses you.

Lord, thank you that we can abide in you as we go about fulfilling our responsibilities. Father, help us not to allow busy-ness to crowd out that special quiet time when it is just the two of us. Amen.