Serving Jesus on His Terms, Part 1of5, Pastor Phil Sessa

Luke 10:41–42, “41 Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. 42 But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

Perhaps you’ve heard the old adage, “if the devil can’t make you bad, he’ll make you busy.” I talk to many people that profess that Jesus is their Lord and Savior, yet many of these same folks don’t seem to have or better yet make time to spend with Jesus? Many people have jobs, families, hobbies, school, homes, and a plethora of responsibilities, so since God knows our heart, He should understand right?

Jesus came to visit the sisters of Lazarus in their home one day and in the midst of his visit this whole issue of busyness, and serving Jesus rose to the forefront of His visitation. Jesus enters the home of the sisters and upon doing so each one responded to Jesus in a particular manner. Martha began to become cumbered (distracted) with much serving, and proceeded to question Jesus saying, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone?” It seemed that the conversation centered on the value of sitting which is how Mary chose to respond to Jesus’ visit as opposed to serving, which is how Martha reacts to Christ’s arrival. Martha, seemingly feeling that she chose the better and perhaps more reverend option attempts to force Jesus’ hand by requesting that He tell Mary to join her and serve Jesus alongside her. Perhaps if Mary would serve the foods, sweep the floor, or perform any helpful task, this would lighten Martha’s work load and therefore, help the work move along more quickly.

There is in fact always enough time to accomplish our God given tasks, and also to spend time with God Himself if one seeks first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33). We must have Kingdom priorities, God’s Kingdom must come, our kingdom must go. In prayer, the Twelve were instructed to pray, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done.” In the Ten Commandments, God wrote, “I Am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt,out of the house ofbondage. “You shall have no other gods before Me.” When asked by a scribe which was the greatest Commandment, Jesus responded by saying, “29 Thefirst of all the commandmentsis:‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ Thisis the first commandment (Mark 12:30).”

Mary to have kept these things in mind in prioritizing the things of God, showing Jesus Himself in this case amidst her choice to be with Jesus instead of doing chores for Jesus. Jesus didn’t repel Martha away, but rather attempted to use the scenario to show Martha that when Christ is present both made a decision as to how they would respond to Jesus’ presence in their home. Jesus said that “Mary chose the better decision sitting at his feet rather than Martha who served at His side”, (Luke 10:41-42). In the area of servant hood, a true servant does the will of the one that is being served. Hence servant hood must be on Christ’s terms and not ours. Let me illustrate. A father desires his child to clean his or her room, yet instead of doing the will of the father the child washes the dishes and takes out the garbage. Are you serving Jesus at this time on your terms, or His? To be continued, blessings Phil the Evangelist

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