So far, we have talked about the need to be still and slow down. So much competes for our attention. We have seen that God can be known if we will slow down and listen.
Can you be too busy doing the “Lord’s work”? I’ve heard many Christians say, “I’d rather burn out than rust out for the Lord.” That sounds noble but it has always bothered me. Isn’t there a middle option? Isn’t there balance? Isn’t there a way to passionately serve my Lord without burning out?
If the Parado Principle (the 80/20 rule) holds true, then 20% do 80% of the work at church. Our pastors are already working hard and need volunteers to help in the ministry. In deed their ministry is to enable 100% of us to share 100% of the work. They need Sunday school teachers, musicians, small group leaders, folks to hand out bulletins or set up the gym … the needs are endless.
How can we serve and not burnout? How do we stay balanced? It has to do with our focus.
Read: Luke 10:38-42
At the Home of Martha and Mary
38As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said. 40But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!"
41"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, 42but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."
Martha always gets the short end of the stick in this passage. Please note that she is serving! That is very noble. She is making sandwiches for her meeting with Jesus but failing to realize that she is not WITH JESUS. She is so busy making stuff for Him she is not with Him. That is a risk.
We have so many pressures that make us “anxious and troubled” (v.41). The word “anxious” means to “be drawn in different directions, distracted”. Can you identify with that? Are you distracted by many things? Even working for Jesus cannot take the place of spending time with Jesus.
Just like a river that stops flowing, when we do not spend quality time with Jesus we will dry up and start to smell. He is our source of water.
We get the secret to knowing Jesus and finding balance in serving in v.39. It is really so simple we can miss it. Sitting. Did you catch that? Sitting. Slowing down long enough to enjoy Jesus as Lord and Friend. The Greek word means, “sitting alongside”. Mary was sitting close to Him. He was nearing His cross and she knew it. She wanted to enjoy time with Him. So, Mary sat next to Jesus.
That takes time and stillness.
Maybe you could identify a quiet place and time to sit at the Lord’s side and listen to Him.
Evaluate what you “do for the Lord”. Is it in balance? Maybe you need to do more, maybe less but I’d take it to Jesus and see.
Will you take my challenge to turn off the radio this week? Let’s try to slow down and see if we don’t run into a God that wants us to know Him.
Have a God-revealing week.
DevoLink: Devotions to help you Link with God.