Thursday, June 10, 2010

what is needful...

While talking with a friend tonight, a passage was brought to mind.  Luke 10:38-42 is a passage that many of us are familiar with as the story of Martha and Mary.  Martha is busy in her preparations for the Lord and His disciples and Mary is sitting at His feet.  Martha becomes upset that she is doing the work by herself and asks the Lord to tell Mary to help her!  Jesus replies that there is only one needful thing, while Martha worries and is troubled by many, and this is the thing that Mary chose, a thing which would not be taken away from her.  That one thing is sitting at Jesus' feet, listening to His every word.  I found it very interesting in reading a few commentaries that the three times Mary is encountered in the scriptures, she is at Jesus' feet! (John 11:32, John 12:3 and here in Luke 10)  What a wonderful place to be found! 

The one thing that is needful is as George Whitefield said "the care of the soul"  and here it is contrasted with Martha's cares of the body.  To adequately care for her soul, Mary had to sit at Jesus' feet, she had to listen to His words.  In speaking of the importance of this he said:
           "What seems most great and most important in life, what kings and senates, what the wisest and greatest of this world are employing their time, their councils, their pens, their labors upon, are trifles, when compared with this one thing. A man may subsist, he may in some considerable measure be happy, without learning, without riches, without titles, without health, without liberty, without friends, nay, though "the life be more than meat, and the body than raiment," Matt. 6:25, yet may he be happy, unspeakably happy, without the body itself. But he cannot be so, in the neglect of the one thing needful. I must therefore bespeak your regard to it in the words of Moses, "it is not a light thing, but it is your life," Deut. 32:47."
The one needful thing that is often a challenge for me to remain faithful doing is sitting at my Lord's feet as Mary did.  I think about all of the other things that I "need".  A job, a husband, food, shelter and so forth... But God says that only this one thing is needed.  He also says in Matthew 6:33 " But seek ye first the Kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you" in the previous verses it is speaking of our worries for our physical needs, but He reminds us of the one needful thing and at the same time assures us that the rest is taken care of.  I love the word "but" the verses before say that the gentiles are seeking earnestly for these "earthly" needs, BUT YOU, that's right, you, you aren't a gentile, you are Mine, and I don't care what they are doing, BUT YOU, seek first My Kingdom, that's right, this is your priority as my child, and then in His goodness He relieves our fears about our "earthly" needs as well, and all (not some) these things shall be added to you.  How good He is!

What an amazing thing that Mary was known for.  It makes me wonder what I will be known for? What about me will those around me notice?  I too, like Mary, want to be found at Jesus' feet.