“Tea, please,” answered Asquith.
“China, India, or Sri Lanka, sir?” asked the butler.
“Lemon, milk, or cream, sir?”
“Milk, please,” replied Asquith.
“Jersey, Hereford, or Holstein, sir?” asked the butler.
Today in the Word, May 5, 1993
The point? There are no end to our possible choices, and each choice, no matter how big or small, changes the direction and circumstances to some degree.
Ø Frederick Speakman, an English naturalist and author. said, “The roads we take are more important than the goals we announce. Decisions determine destiny.”
How many times have we wished we could go back and make a different choice because of the destination our past choice led us to?
Martha and Mary are going to help us to see that our choices matter. Martha and Mary are sisters and their brother is Lazarus, whom Jesus later raises from the dead.
1. Choice #1: Martha chooses to invite Jesus to her house, ()
? How would this choice change the course of Martha’s day? Now she has to prepare a meal for guests that were coming to her home.
? How has this choice changed Mary’s day? Instead of doing her routine chores, she is sitting at the feet of Jesus, hearing the words of truth and life from her Creator.
3. Choice #3: Martha chooses to put on an elaborate meal, (40a)
? How did Martha’s choice to put on an elaborate spread rather than a normal simple meal further change her day? She complexity of the meal has left her in a storm of tumultuous emotions.
4. Choice #4: Martha chooses to ask Christ for a personal favor, (40b-41)
5. Choice #5: Jesus chooses to turn Martha down, (41)
This is a statement similar to what Jesus made to the Samaritan woman at the well when Jesus asked her to go get her husband. She told Jesus that she wasn’t married. Jesus replied, “You have well said, ‘I have no husband,’ for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; in that you spoke truly,” ().
Martha mentioned one thing to Jesus about her situation, and Jesus revealed that He knew that there were many things that were impacting her life.
6. Choice #6: Jesus expresses the importance of our choices, (42)
42 But (not many things, but only) one thing (that you have thus far failed to choose) is needed (is necessary), and Mary (with all her options) has chosen that
God says in that “Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods, but God will destroy both it and them…” They are going to pass away, but not the person nor ones Creator, so these are the matters we need to put most of our concentration in.
Jesus did not say that what Martha was doing was wrong or even unimportant, He was saying, “Martha, you have lots of choices to make every day, but you tend to not choose the best things.
Jesus would have been happy if Martha had ordered some pizza and wings and sat down with them.
Choosing the right things can make the difference of being distracted and all strung out verses focused on the most fruitful things and which help us to maintain a restful spirit.
When Martha prepared and served the elaborate dinner and all the dishes were washed and put away, after everyone left, what has she gained beyond the task of feeding everyone a fancy meal.
On the other hand, after Jesus left Martha and Mary’s house and proceeded on with His kingdom work, Mary has some of God’s truth that will continually set her free, the bread of life that will continually nourish her spiritually, the sword of the Word that will help her in her spiritual warfare, and treasure to pass along to others, to name a few benefits of her choices to sit at Jesus’ feet.
We are presented with choices every day.
· Are we habitually making choices that leave us troubled and all stressed out, rather than at peace and joyous?
· Are we habitually making choices that, afterwards really amount to very little that has been gained concerning our glorifying God and furthering His kingdom work?
(AMP) – Everything is permissible (allowable and lawful) for me; but not all things are helpful (good for me to do, expedient and profitable when considered with other things). Everything is lawful for me, but I will not become the slave, (or be distracted) of anything or be brought under its power.
– Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. 9 The things which you (and Mary) learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.
Film maker Walt Disney was ruthless in cutting anything that got in the way of a story’s flow. Ward Kimball, one of the animators for SNOW WHITE, recalls working 240 days on a 4 1/2 minute sequence in which the dwarfs made soup for Snow White and almost destroyed the kitchen in the process. Disney thought it was funny, but he decided the scene stopped the flow of the picture, so out it went.
When the film of our lives is shown, will it be as great as it might be? A lot will depend on the multitude of “good” things we need to eliminate to make way for the great things God wants to do through us. - Kenneth Langley