But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore, tell her to help me.” And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”
Her brother would be leaving on a long mission at the end of the summer, so she thought it would be a great send-off to throw him a party. During the week leading up to that day, she did nothing but prep and plan. First, she had to make sure everyone who would be invited was invited. Then, she had to figure out what she would serve and where she would buy it. From the decorations to the beverages and, of course, some kind of gift, she had run herself ragged that entire week. During the party, she spent about all of her time making sure everyone was having fun and taken care of. When all was said and done, she had spent the final week with her brother not really being with her brother.
Martha was thinking about tasks, and Mary was thinking about time. The first sister saw that there were practical needs to be met. She had a guest in her home whom she wanted to feed and make comfortable, so she got to work. Her guest was important, but her attention to him was focused through meeting his needs. The second sister’s attention was drawn to the Lord himself and the value of having time with him. She sat at his feet and listened to his words, so she was learning from him. She was giving him worship and learning his ways, which meant more to him than serving him food or drink. Martha did no wrong. Mary just chose to do better.
Some people spend a ton of time doing things for God but not much time just spending time with him. While we have much work to do for him in this life, He also wants our fellowship. Ours is to be a relationship of intimacy, which requires intimate times. He wants us to sit at his feet and listen to his words, soaking in the truth and absorbing his character. Take the time to complete your work for the Lord, but do not neglect simply spending time with him. There is much for us to learn simply from being in his presence. Father, teach us what real intimacy with You looks like, and help us to take time away from the work just to fellowship with You.