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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Oops (01/14/10)

TITLE: Important vs. Necessary
By Edmond Ng


But the Lord answered and said to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her." (Luke 10:41-42 NAS)
A few years ago, my wife and I were in a cab on the way to the airport for our planned holiday trip when I suddenly realized I have forgotten to bring our travel papers. Without a choice then, I told the driver to send us back to where we came from.

Many of us, like me, may tend to forget what is most important when we get too caught up in our planning and preparing for an event. When we plan to travel abroad, for example, we know what is most important is our travel documents. Without our passports, tickets and immigration papers, everything else we do in preparing for our travel is in vain. This, of course, does not mean we need not prepare whatever is necessary, but rather it means we need to know our priorities and what is most important.

As Christians, we have been called to prepare the way for our Lordís return. Some of us may have labored hard to prepare the way by planning and organizing evangelistic events, by involving ourselves in many Christian activities, and by performing all the things necessary to ensure the smooth running of the greatest upcoming event on earth. All these are worthy and good, but sometimes we may become too caught up with these activities which are necessary, that we neglect what is most important--Jesus.

Busying ourselves to ensure the world is ready for our Lordís return is perfectly fine. However, if like Martha we become too distracted with all the preparations or too worried and bothered by the many things that need to be done, to the point of failing to see the good part and the one thing that is really necessary (Luke 10:38-42), then all our efforts would have been in vain. Just as without our passports we cannot travel abroad, so it is the same for us if we do not have Christ as the center of our lives. Everything we do in preparing for His return would have been in vain. We should therefore learn from Mary to set our priorities right by choosing the good part to sit at Jesusí feet, to put Him first in everything (Luke 10:38-42). If we, after busying ourselves with the necessary, discover we have left our first love for God, we must then remember where we have fallen, repent, and do the deeds we have done at first (Revelation 2:4-5), that we may rediscover our first love.

Forgive us dear Lord for sometimes failing to put You first in all we do, and for failing at times to set our priorities right. Help us always to be mindful Lord to focus on what is the most important even while busying ourselves with the necessary. Be the center of our lives Lord, that all we do may not be in vain, for we know O Lord that without You, we can accomplish nothing worthy of claim.

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This article has been read 801 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Joanne Sher 01/22/10
Great analogy! Nice devotional. I will remember this one. Thanks.
Allen Stark01/24/10
Amen! It's the close, involved relationships that Jesus is calling us to have. I truly enjoy the organic more than the organizational.
Chely Roach01/25/10
Beautiful devotional...truly spoke to me. Thank you for your gentle reminder.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 01/25/10
A devotion I should read often. I, like Martha, tend to worry about everything. Thank you for the reminder.
Dr. Sharon Schuetz01/26/10
This is a good reminder, especially to those of us in the ministry. Thanks for the reminder.
Lyn Churchyard01/26/10
Great devotional and a good example of of an 'Oops' moment.
Barbara Lynn Culler01/26/10
Great analogy! At least you were not yet at the airport when you realized papers were missing!
Janice Fitzpatrick01/26/10
I love devotionals that are relateable and symbolic. I really enjoyed this piece and was touched by it. Sometimes I too become so preoccupied that I do lose track of why we were created in the first place, and that is to have a close relationship with our Lord and Savior. This is well done and your entry is one that the reader would be drawn to come back and re-read again. Thank you.:0)
Connie Dixon01/26/10
Thanks for a great reminder. I hope to heed your lesson today and put Him first.
Patricia Herchenroether01/26/10
Nicely done. And as usual, I really like your ending prayer. You have made great strides since I was last on the site. Congrats!
Carol Slider 01/26/10
Thank you for reminding us of the important distinction between these two adjectives! Your personal experience illuminated this very well. Good job.
Jan Ackerson 01/27/10
Wonderful, Edmund! The anecdote at the beginning flowed perfectly into your lesson. Well done.
c clemons01/27/10
I like the title, however I found the 'oops' momemt an after thought to the content. The focus was more on the 'important versus the necessary' which was very good. The analogy of Mary and Martha and forgetting travel documents were two separate things in my opinion. Overall very good writing.