2010-03-06 - Alone With the Lord
Luke 10:42, But one thing is necessary.
All of us know, by experience, that the more spiritual the exercise, the more quick we are to tire of it. Many of us know it most in prayer. We set aside some time to pray. We get alone. We begin, maybe read a passage of Scripture to set our minds on Heavenly things, pray only for a short time, and we realize that we are thinking about something other than prayer. Our mind has wandered in some direction, and we are planning, reviewing, rehearsing but not praying. Prayer is a spiritual exercise, and it is not easy to stay focused in spiritual exercises. If this is a common struggle for you in prayer, I suggest that you keep a list of things to pray for handy when you pray. Pray through the list. It seems unspiritual to need a list, but it is certainly more spiritual than thinking about taxes, or oil changes, or a conversation we have had or might have, rather than praying.
We see, in the account of Martha serving and being busy, and Mary sitting at Jesus feet, that it is easy to think we are doing a spiritual exercise when we arent. One of the traps we fall into is that we become, often when we are seeking to serve Christ, concerned that anyone will notice. We wonder if anyone will have a clue that we were behind the matter. We wonder if someone might wrongly think that perhaps someone else did this or that. We cannot get beyond our selfishness, and be content to work quietly for the Lord, do our best, and let the results and the glory fall to Him. Here is a consideration for all of us who have struggled with lack of recognition: The Lord doesnt really need us. The Lords cause went along very well for centuries without us, and it will continue to get along very well when we are gone. It isnt about us. It is about Jesus Christ, and when we serve Christ, if we are really serving Him, then it isnt about us. If it is about us, then we are serving ourselves and not the Lord.
We referenced Martha a moment ago, and in our service unto the Lord, we must remember to choose the good part first. I encourage you to serve Christ diligently with all your heart. I encourage you to do it more now, than you do. But dont be as Martha who, in her service, lost something she couldnt recover. She lost precious time with her Lord. Mary chose the good part (Luke 10). We are prone to give up the good part. The good part is communion with Jesus Christ, and we are worse off when we sacrifice communion with Christ for Christian activity. We cant be always doing, or we will never be refilled with fresh streams from the living waters of Jesus. We have to find time alone with the Lord, in order to be able to serve Him faithfully and joyfully. If one of the 12 Apostles were giving a sermon nearby, and you had to choose between that and your regular time of prayer with the Lord you should pick the prayer every time. I realize we dont have to make those choices, but it shows how significant our communion times with the Lord really are, or really should, be in our lives. Let us make them a priority.
Soli Deo Gloria,