38 As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39 Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. 40 But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.”
41 But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! 42 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”
While sitting on our back deck on a crisp spring morning, reading my bible and daily devotion, our 65 pound chocolate lab, named Maggie circled around and plopped down beside my feet. She has the sweetest face and most longing eyes, so it was impossible to resist her plead for a pat on the head and a rub of her shiny coat. As she leaned in for more affection, her eyes, ears & nose were working overtime, taking in all the distractions in our yard; birds chirping, squirrels scampering from tree to tree, neighborhood noise and the smell of an impending rainstorm. Unwavering in her pursuit of me, however, she continued to sit, not budging from her current position.
Since her adoption 6 months ago, Maggie has learned that if she will sit beside (or sometimes ON TOP of!) my feet and make eye contact, I am certain to give her the love and attention she desperately craves.
As an adopted daughter of the King, Mary learned the same thing. Despite the distractions of the day, she chose to first sit and soak in the love and attention that only Jesus could give. She realized that before she could do the things that needed to be done, her soul needed to be filled by the Word made flesh. Her sister Martha, however was distracted and worried about serving the guest of honor, instead of worshipping the guest of honor. Martha no doubt had the gift of hospitality, but her whining and complaining proved that she had failed to first pursue the One who had given her the gift.
In order to live life to the full as a devoted follower of Christ, we must learn to be like Mary, Martha…. and Maggie. Each day we need to curl up and sit at the feet of Jesus, look longingly into His eyes and listen to His every Word. Then, when our heart, mind & soul have been filled with love, we will have the strength to get up and use the gifts that God has given us to serve others.