Monday, January 16, 2017

The Choice

Let’s consider Jesus’ words to Martha again, especially, the last part of Luke 42: “Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” This is Jesus’ not so subtle, firm but at the same time, compassionate way of telling Martha that she needs to rethink her choices. “Mary has chosen well…how about you, Martha?”

In my mind, I imagine this scene wrapping up with Jesus’ hand slipping off Martha’s shoulder, the intensity of His eyes piercing through her soul, as He slowly turns and walks away back to his seat…leaving Martha standing there, tray of food still in her hands… dumbfounded…confused…quietly pondering the Lord’s words.

Jesus doesn’t force the issue…

He doesn’t directly tell her what to do. He does not command her to do anything. However, it is clear. Martha can’t deny what’s going on…the only thing she can do now is to make a choice.

She can continue her frantic pace, in pursuit of what she considers noble works that reveal a deeply misguided emphasis on the things of this world. Or, on the other hand, she can drop it all and seek His presence…letting Him take care of all the details…letting Him take care of all the rest.

I don’t know what she does… I can only speculate. My guess is that, being the practical woman that she is, Martha probably continued with the preparations to make sure all got done…being the Jesus follower I know she is, Martha was not the same. She might have made sure everything was in place to take care of the guests, but if Martha and I are as alike as I think we are, my guess is also that she was troubled by what Jesus said to her…something in her heart began to change.

I believe that as Martha went on with the chores, she could not stop thinking about the choice she had to make. She understood she was at a crossroads and that soon she would have to make a decision that would change the way she does things. I’m a slow-learner. Therefore, I’ve been at that same spot many times. I have been so concerned and so afraid by the waves and the winds of the storm that I have lost sight of the Only One Who matters, the Lord of the Storm. I hang on to the tasks and forget that I need to surrender all tasks to Him, for He owns the design of the plan that included such tasks, and that it is only by His power that I would ever accomplish any of their details.

There is still a lot of surrendering that needs to happen within my heart. And if Martha is anything like me, I would guess that she still needs at least another face to face encounter with Jesus in order to learn the lesson of surrendering in a way that when the time comes again, she and I would make the right choice.

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