“I’m surrounded by legitimate needs, and I want to do them all. And so I try. But midway through a blustery day of service, I find myself cross and frustrated, not at all aglow with the saintly aura I’d expected when I set out that morning.”
So what can we learn from these five verses in Luke 10? How do we find the balance?
I guess you would consider me old-school. I still keep a printable to-do list in my daily planner. I take far more satisfaction from actually crossing things off my list rather than deleting them from electronic devices, but whether your list is written, typed or kept safely in your mind, go through it on a regular basis. Make sure the items listed are things that truly need your time and attention. Joanna Weaver made the point that while we often have many talents and need to make the best use of them, equally important is finding the right time to use them. She wrote, “While there are many things that need to be done, things I’m capable of doing and want to do, I’m not always the one to do them…God may only be calling me to pray that the right person will rise up and accomplish it.” There are many good things we can be involved in, but we cannot be involved in every good thing. Keeping our balance sometimes means knowing our limits and using the word, “no.”
In two short verses Jesus tells us exactly what our priorities should be. While tending to physical needs is important, it is not the most important. Kathy Pollard recently tweeted a very fitting quote, “When we put God first all other things fall into proper place or drop out of our lives (E. Benson).”
“Contrary to popular belief, we can’t do it all. We’re not even supposed to try.”
Nothing is too small to bring before God. Just as earthly parents want to hear from their children, our Heavenly Father wants to hear from us and we can talk with him anytime (1 Thess. 5:17; Rom. 12:12; Ps. 55:17)! James tells us that, “the effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (Jam. 5:16). We can pray that God will help us keep our balance and focus. We can even pray that he will give us the wisdom to know when it is time to say “no.”
Practice Practical Study Habits
Schedules and preferences vary; therefore the best time for study will not be the same for everyone, likewise with methods. Find what works for you and strive to keep a standing appointment with the Lord each day.
Keep the Proper Balance, Press On & Remember It's Purpose
"Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her"
- Luke 10:41-42
"Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you."
- Matthew 6:33
McWhorter, Jane. She Hath Done What She Could. Abilene: Quality Publications, 1973.
Weaver, Joanna. Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World. Colorado Springs: Waterbrook Press, 2004.