I was having a conversation with a co-worker. I couldn’t tell you what the topic was, but it was one that had kept our attention for some time. Then suddenly, I saw them.
My cubicle mate had dangling earrings. They were a combination of blues, greens and a mixture of the two colors. They were large, shiny and the shape of a teardrop. It was as if I were a fish and these fishing lures were drawing me to them.
I stopped talking. I was mesmerized by their shape, color and design. If in fact I were a fish, I would have been dinner.
Oh how often I am distracted from spending time with God or helping someone in need. The unfortunate thing is that it happens daily for me. I’ll be focused on my study time and then my mind begins to wander. I’ll remember something else I wanted to do. Or I’ll read a verse of Scripture and think, “I could use that in a blog post.” Or an interruption will draw me from my study time and it then becomes more difficult to return.
The same can be said of my prayer time. I’ve learned through the years that unless I physically speak my prayers, chances are pretty good that I’ll end up being distracted by something and then my prayer time with God is disjointed.
But I know I am not alone in this dilemma. The distractions of this world and life have kept many from spending time with God and accepting what He has to offer.
Martha was one such woman. Martha and her family had a close relationship with Jesus. Apparently, close enough to make a complaint about her sister to Jesus.
Jesus was passing through town with His disciples. Martha opened her home to the group. Her sister Mary sat at Jesus’ feet, listening and learning from the Master, while Martha was busy preparing a meal and their home for their guests.
Martha wasn’t happy with the way Mary was behaving. And she told Jesus. “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” (Luke 10:40b – NIV)
Jesus’ response was priceless. “Martha, Martha.” (Luke 10:41a – NIV) Now this wasn’t the end of Jesus’ response, but it tells us the message Jesus wanted to convey.
“Donna, Donna. Why are you worried about this particular thing?” “Donna, Donna. Really? You made the same mistake again?” “Donna, Donna. What were you thinking?” “Donna, Donna. Are you sure that’s what you want to do?” Yes, I can hear Jesus saying these same words to me. “Donna, Donna.” (You can insert your name here anytime you want.)
For Martha, she had been “distracted by all the preparations that had to be made.” (Luke 10:40a – NIV) And by being distracted, she missed the message.
Jesus continued with His response in Luke 10:41-42 (NIV). “Martha, Martha, 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.”
Mary chose the better. Mary got the “one thing.” She chose to sit at the feet of Jesus and hear His words. To know that her life would be different because of knowing this Man. She knew in that moment that her spiritual needs far outweighed her physical needs.
What lessons to learn from Mary!
My friend and I speak of that moment on occasion. Of how I was so drawn to those earrings. To be honest, they were not something I would normally be drawn to. They weren’t a color I care for. They were not my style at all. Honestly, I rarely wear jewelry. But that didn’t matter. The distraction was there and the conversation was lost.
The distractions of our lives don’t even have to be something we like. It doesn’t have to be something we’re usually drawn toward. If we are not careful, anything can distract us from doing what we’re supposed to be doing.
Isn’t it time we realize that our spiritual desires need to take precedence over our physical desires? Isn’t it time to realize that Jesus can make all the difference in our lives? Isn’t it time that we understood the “one thing?” I say yes.
My mind must stay focused. My heart must be in tune with God. My actions must show that nothing can distract me from listening to Jesus.
I don’t like hearing the words, “Donna, Donna.” What about you? Are you willing to be undistracted? I pray that you will come to the understanding that Jesus wants us to listen and hear His message and that He is more important than any distraction.
Grace and peace be yours in abundance,