Highest Priority

Monday, July 18, 2011

On Sunday I read Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence by Sarah Young and was knocked over by these words:

You live among people who glorify busyness . . . They have bought into the illusion that more is always better: more meetings, more programs, more activity. I have called you to follow me on a solitary path, making time alone with me your highest priority and deepest joy . . . As you walk close to Me, I can bless others through you.

Often, I think I need to do more in order to be a better mother, a better wife, a better citizen, a better Christian. But if I do more at the expense of my alone time with God - an overscheduled day leaves me too tired to get up early, or email creeps into my early morning Bible study time - then what good are all those activities? They start to take away my core.

I know that, but I have trouble living it.

(See! The phone holding the Bible open as I wrote this post.)

Ms. Young uses the classic story of Mary and Martha to illustrate her point. Martha is busy, "distracted by all the preparations," (Luke 10: 40) when Jesus comes to her house. I can totally relate. She keeps working, but her sister, Mary, "sat at the Lord's feet listening to what he said." (Luke 10:39) I wish I could relate. Martha complained to Jesus, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!" (Luke 10: 40).

"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better and it will not be taken away from her." (Luke 10:41-42).

Preparations, activities, meetings, work . . . it will all go away. It can be taken away.

Listening to God's Word, spending time alone with Him . . . that lasts.

I believe this, but it is hard for me to give "highest priority" to quiet time, alone, with God. I tend to feel guilty about it, indulgent. It doesn't always feel productive because I am part of a world that requires immediate results.

I need to work on that. What about you?

Would you like to write a guest post for A Work in Progress? I'd love to hear about your summer! Have you had some wonderful experiences with your children, hilarious mishaps, or unexpected trials? How are you working on motherhood and faith this season? Email me at courtney(dot)awip(at)gmail(dot)com.

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6 Responses to “Highest Priority”

  1. Hi Courtney - I think this is so true.  I know I put my time with other stuff before God all the time.  This morning I woke up thinking I need to start prioritizing and putting time with God first.  Then tackle the rest.
    Great post and reminder
    God bless

  2. Oh this rings so true for me: letting email infringe on my morning time with God. So often I think, "Oh I'll just check email quick..." and before I know it, 20 minutes has passed, and I only have just 10 minutes left for God! Talk about mixed up priorities! Thanks for reminding me to keep Him first.

  3. I have been working on this for several months now.  My time with Him is where everything else needs to flow from! Thanks for sharing!

  4. I am here!! want to see : https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/TGILKBWyy82BsLfIBZamK9JF3ZZmnC6udZbgQBCJvA0?feat=directlink

    I so do this!! ...interrupted and off into email ..internet world I go!!

  5. I think it would be fair to say that we live in an easily-distracted world. So much begging for our attention. If I don't get up a little early in the morning before the noise of the day begins, I have a very difficult time having any sort of prayer time. I find it is more of a gift to me than to Him, and my day is always better for it.

  6. Yes, like everyone said here - it is something I continue to struggle with.  Keeping the quiet time sacred is hard, but worth it.