The One Thing


“Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hidden: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name; through Christ our Lord. Amen” (from The Book of Common Prayer).

“Purity of heart is to will one thing” (Sören Kierkegaard).

“Blessed are those who are pure in heart—they will see God” (Matthew 5:8).

Martha, Martha, Martha. Bless her heart.

She’s too busy doing things for Jesus to spend time with Jesus.

Sound familiar?

She’s playing the part of the dutiful hostess and making sure all the guests’ glasses are filled and the hors’ d’oeuvres are replenished and the dishes are clean. She’s feeling a bit overwhelmed by it all and decides to vent her frustrations.

What does Jesus do?

Does He scold her for her impertinence? Does He lay into her for interrupting Him and making demands of the Son of God?

Not hardly.

He reminds her of what’s important. Of what really matters.

Mary has chosen to be near Him, to sit at His feet. That’s the only place in the room that matters.

Too often, I can find time for anything and everything but spending time with Jesus. That always ends up sliding down my list of priorities until I find myself at the end of the day with good intentions and no results.

Most of that to-do list can wait. Some of it can be left undone. What cannot be left off or undone is being in a place where Jesus can speak to you. For Jesus’ words are life. They are more vital than bread.

So make it your goal to carve out 15 minutes from your day for quiet contemplation and reflection. Even 5. Make time and space in your life to hear what Jesus wants to say to you.

And the truth is that Jesus doesn’t want to scold you. He doesn’t want to berate you.

He wants to remind you of something you’ve forgotten. He wants to remind you that you are still after all this time the Beloved, the apple of God’s eye. He wants you to know that there is a better life than you have ever known. He wants you to know it’s never too late to come back home.

So that’s your assignment for the week.


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