Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The art of doing less

"As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42
Have you ever found that some things are really hard to start, but once you get started you have trouble stoping? It's like the Newton's law of inertia, An object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force. Once I start my day rolling in all the things I have to do, I find it really hard to stop. I've had days where my Bible was left on the coffee table and I look at it, but I can't seem to find the will to stop my doing and pick it up. Countless times a day one of my little ones will exclaim in amazement or run up to me wanting to share something with me and I just can't stop my doing long enough to soak it up. Usually my heart is in the right place, I assume my children would like a good home cooked meal for dinner or I figure that my husband would like to walk through the kitchen for once without getting massive amounts of crumbs stuck to his feet.
Poor busy Martha has always gotten such a bad rap, rushing about instead of sitting and listening to Jesus. I'm sure her heart was in the right place too, thinking that Jesus would be tired and hungry and desiring to serve Him. But she was so distracted about all the screaming details of the here and now that she failed to see who Jesus was. 
What if we are racing about our days, checking off those to do lists and posting those instagrams of our finished projects and failing to see what is right in front of us. What would happen if we squeezed our eyes shut for a moment, took a deep breath and let ourselves come to a screeching stop. Could we let our minds stop racing and just let ourselves be? If we were still long enough maybe we could catch the fleeting beautiful moments that come to us each day and beg for our attention. Maybe we would see the miracle of Jesus' love pouring out of those bright little eyes in front of us. Maybe if we took our attention off of all these things we had to accomplish to keep up our social profile we would start to really live. And maybe, just maybe, our eyes would be opened to the One who is so close and we would be still enough to hear His gentle voice speaking to us.
"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10

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