The Christian’s Devotional Life #2 – Prayer:
“Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. 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.” (Luke 10:38-42).
I remember how busy I used to be when I was the youth pastor at Bible Fellowship Church in Surrey, BC. In addition to overseeing the youth ministry, I was the Christian Education Director, I taught two classes at Pacific Life Bible College, and I taught several Bible classes at our Christian school, RegentAcademy, where I did weekly chapels in the elementary school. Then, in our last year there, Liza and I pioneered a discipleship program called the Revolution Master’s Commission. I was so busy; it was easy to fall into the Martha trap of being distracted by much serving, and neglecting the most important thing of spending time sitting at the feet of Jesus in prayer. It was a battle to maintain my personal devotional time with Jesus.
The above Bible story is a familiar one. Jesus had gone to visit Lazarus’ sisters Mary and Martha. When he got to their house, Martha was busy and distracted with much serving, and her sister Mary sat down at the feet of Jesus and listened to His teaching. After a while, Martha got upset with the fact that Mary wasn’t doing any work, and went to complain to Jesus. “Lord, don’t you care that Mary has left me to serve alone?” But how did Jesus respond to Martha? He said, “You are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part…”
I can’t tell you how many times that the Lord has spoken to me through this passage of Scripture. There have been many times in my Christian life where I have been like Martha, having gotten so busy and distracted by serving the Lord in ministry, that I neglected the most important thing – spending time at the feet of Jesus. There are so many times that I found my personal devotional time with Jesus being crowded out. I continually have to make a conscious decision to come and sit at the feet of Jesus and be in His presence and feast upon His Word, and when I do it makes all the difference. There is a refreshing that comes from abiding in Jesus.
The Bible says that, “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, Jesus went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.” (Mark 1:35). If the Lord Jesus Christ found it necessary to set aside time every day to get alone with the Heavenly Father in prayer, how much more do we need to make personal prayer a priority? I want to challenge you today to fight for your quiet time, your personal devotional life with Jesus. If we don’t spend time with Him, then we will be worried and troubled about many things like Martha was. Prayer isn’t something that we have to do, a religious duty to earn brownie points with God. Prayer is something we get to do, to have intimate fellowship with our Saviour. Take time to sit at the feet of Jesus today.
Pastor Chris Jordan