While life is extremely busy for everyone, isn’t it interesting that we usually find time for the things that are important to us? However, with everything pulling for our attention today, it has never been more crucial that we set proper priorities. In fact, one of the most important lessons we could ever learn is how to determine what is important.
We can learn a lot about priorities from an account in the tenth chapter of Luke in which Jesus visits the home of Martha. Wanting to be a good hostess, Martha welcomes Jesus and then gets busy serving. Meanwhile, her sister Mary simply sits at the feet of Jesus and listens to Him. Martha grows frustrated and complains that she is doing all the work by herself. She even asks Jesus to tell Mary to help her. However, Jesus gives a very interesting response. “Martha, Martha,” He answers, “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, NIV).
Jesus was teaching Martha a lesson about her priorities. In all of her well-intentioned service, she had become distracted from what was really important. Her focus, which should have been on her guest, had shifted to her service. While the service may have been important, listening to Jesus was more important, because His words carried eternal significance.
God taught me the same lesson during my freshman year of college when I was worried about choosing the right major. One day, I simply prayed, “God, what do you want me to do with my life?” I was expecting Him to reveal my future occupation and show me which major I should select. However, the response I received was much different than I had expected. Immediately after I asked my question, this portion of Scripture came to my mind: “The people who know their God shall be strong and carry out great exploits” (Dan. 11:32). I knew in my heart that the message of that scripture was God’s response to me. He answered my question in a way that got to the very heart of the issue.
You see, God was using that verse to re-direct my focus to where He wanted it to be. He was telling me that what was really important was not that I chose the “right” major, but that I set my heart to know Him. He was showing me that if I would concentrate on knowing Him, He would use my life in great ways, regardless of what major I chose.
Sometimes, we get so caught up in what we can do for God that we miss what’s really important: seeking God and listening to Him. We can get so wrapped up in our acts of service to God that we forget Him in the process. Yes, it is important to serve God, but what really matters is that we know Him. Let’s all re-focus our attention today and dedicate ourselves to seeking God in a deeper way. Let’s become people who know their God!