Saturday, December 19, 2009

Super Markets & Coffee Shops

When I go to the super-market and run into a friend, I'm always excited to see her and we usually stop and catch up quickly, but we both have lists to shop for, dinner to cook and errands to run so the time we spend catching up leaves much to be desired, though it is nice because it keeps us up on each other's lives.  I call those the "super-market encounters".

Then there are the coffee-shop encounters I get to have with friends.  Those are the ones that can last up to three hours (sometimes more if time allows!) where we get a lot deeper in conversation, we talk about things that are on our heart and really get to know what's going on in each other's life.  I prefer these encounters, of course, but they don't happen as often as I'd like.

Relationships take work. We must be intentional if we want to deepen those relationships.  Every time I have a super-market encounter with a friend, I am reminded how much I love them and begin to wonder why I don't see them more often or why I haven't taken the time to call them and let them know I care.  It's so easy to get wrapped up in activities and neglect those relationships that are so important in our lives.

Mary and Martha had a different encounter with Christ at the exact same time and in the exact same place in Luke 10:38-42.  Martha's was a "super market encounter" while Mary's was more of a "coffee-shop encounter".  Martha was "distracted by the big dinner she was preparing" and said to Jesus "Lord, doesn't it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work?  Tell her to come and help me."

Meanwhile, Mary was sitting at Jesus' feet, listening to what He was teaching.  And guess what Jesus said to Martha?  "My dear Martha (I love that He was gentle with her) you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about.  Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her."

Lately, I must confess, my quiet times have been more like "super-market encounters" with Jesus.  I've found myself busy, stressed and overwhelmed at times and the "to-do" list seems endless.  Can you relate?  I was reminded of this familiar story about Mary and Martha as I read the Bible today and it struck me.  There are nine words in particular that pierced my heart...."There is only one thing worth being concerned about."  Wow.  I need to remember this.

I pray that tomorrow morning, my quiet time will be more of a "coffee-shop encounter" with Jesus!  I want to sit at His feet, remembering that if I'm going to be concerned about anything, it needs to be that my time with Him is protected.  I pray the same for you!  Let's ask Him to help us to "Be still and know that He is God" (Psalm 46:10) - even during the busy times.

"A single day in Your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else!" Psalm 84:10a

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