A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life

A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life
I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, –that unless I believed, I should not understand.-- St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109)

Friday, October 25, 2013

Trivializing the Momentous and Complicating the Obvious

Dr. Bothwell Graham III recounts a profound story of a wonderful evening he had with his wife many years ago:
I shall long cherish the memory of that delightful evening I spent at home. My wife and I had a simple dinner alone, with pleasant and interesting conversation. Then we sat at the piano and sang many of our favorite songs. When our throats grew weary, we turned on the stereo and danced to beautiful music. When our breath became short, we strolled, arm-in-arm, through our moonlit yard. I was so very happy, and I longed for more such evenings.
But, alas-- early the next morning, a truck pulled into our driveway and shattered my hopes. It was the TV repairman."

 We live in a society with too many distractions, and these distractions often keep us away from what is truly important in life. Televisions, computers, hobbies, and the like are not bad in and of themselves; indeed they can make a positive impact on our lives. The trouble is that we human beings have always had a problem with moderation, and too often we allow such things to have too much prominence in our lives. As a result our relationships with one another and our relationship with Christ suffer. We have trouble keeping the main thing the main thing, an uncanny knack for trivializing the momentous and complicating the obvious.

In Luke 10:38-42 we read:
Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me." But the Lord answered her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken from her."
There was certainly nothing wrong with Martha's desire to provide for the comfort of her guests. That was a good thing. But, Martha had placed too much attention on the good but lesser thing, and was distracted away from the better and greater thing that Mary discovered-- learning at the feet of Jesus!

How often we are like Martha-- distracted away from the things of God and not giving the kind of attention we should to our devotional life, our involvement in the church, the corporate worship of God, and the use of our God given talents and resources for his glory. From the vantage point of the Kingdom of God, we give too much time to the trivial, and have little space in our lives for the significant. We do indeed trivialize the momentous and complicate the obvious.

The matter all of us must reflect upon is whether or not, and, if so, how much we are distracted away from the things that put Mary at the feet of Jesus some two thousand years ago. When we examine our lives, do we look more like Mary or Martha?

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