If I asked you, What is the one thing needful in your life? How would you reply?
There is no mistaking what the one thing needful is in Luke 10:40-42. Although Jesus recognized Martha’s feelings of annoyance, and surely appreciated her work to prepare a meal for Him, He would not reproach Mary for sitting at His feet while He taught. Jesus spoke to Martha about the importance of taking every opportunity to hear and listen to His words.
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 10:40-42 (NKJV)
I can hear Martha saying, “But Rabboni, it is getting late and You must be hungry! Who will feed You if we are all sitting at Your feet listening to You teach?”
Maybe Jesus would suggest that after He had finished speaking, they could all work together to
prepare a meal. Maybe He would reply, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’ ” Matthew 4:4 (NKJV)
The big idea you can nibble on today is that sitting at Jesus’ feet is the one thing necessary. We can’t answer, “God” for He is not a thing. Therefore, it is our action in response to our Creator that we must consider. Will we ignore Him with distractions or keep still and listen.
“God sees the one thing needful, and He alone knows the path that will lead me there.”
Fellowship is the desire of God’s heart. He longs to share His mysteries and blessings with us. Although He will pursue us (Think lost lamb and Good Shepherd), I’m sure He would rather we’d come to Him with the intent to sit a spell.
But why is sitting at His feet and listening to His words so important, especially when we have a multitude of tasks to accomplish in a single day? First, we cannot know Christ deeply if we resist Him. Martha was caught up with activities and worries while Mary sat, she sat at His feet. Mary’s body position implies faith and an inclination to stay put for a while. She had decided to listen and be taught by Christ. She was in a believing submissive state of faith. She was ready to receive the wisdom of God.
Second, we know that every word of God accomplishes what He desires. If we are listening to the living Word, it will speak to our hearts and achieve the purpose for which it is sent.
“So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.”
Isaiah 55:11 (NIV)
Finally, to sit at the feet of Christ is to wait and hear what He would have us do. There is so much to gain from spending time in the Word. Scripture will actively direct and guide us through our day. What a joy it is knowing that we have served God and fulfilled His purpose for us in each and every day. There is one thing needful for all of us. It is to hear and feed upon the
Life-Giving WORD OF GOD.