Home Pastor's Corner . Keeping the main thing the main thing

. Keeping the main thing the main thing

One thing I have stopped doing is to make New Year’s resolutions, because it too often ends in New Year’s dissolutions. However I still have dreams and thoughts about what lies ahead. 2012 is going to be a year with great challenges and the net result can be that our focus is pulled in all kinds of directions. Surely what we need is to start at the right place and to keep the ‘main thing’ the ‘main thing’. Therefore I believe that what we all should desire for 2012 is a life of balance. Our yearning for peace, safety, more money etc. must never overshadow what is really important in our lives. If we knew what this year holds in for us, we would not need to trust God. Remember that you can only see as far as your headlights allow you to see. We can only enjoy the future, if we give our future to the Lord because He is the God who is the light of life. Psalm 56:14 says: “That I may walk before God in the light of life”.

Somebody once said that to have a balanced life is to work for eight hours, have leisure for eight hours and sleep for eight hours because “life must have balance.” I don’t agree with his formula, but I do agree that life must have balance, and that balancing act must begin by putting our relationship with the Lord first.

The Bible agrees. In fact, Jesus once told Martha, the sister of Mary and Lazarus that she needed to rethink her priorities. Martha was a little upset with Mary because she dropped what she was doing to sit at the feet of Jesus. Martha, however, continued with the housework until she had enough, then she went to Jesus and said. “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” (Luke 10:40)

But Jesus told Martha that it was Mary who had made the right choice by putting the Lord first in her life. “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.” (Luke 10:41-42)

Well Martha apparently heeded Jesus’ advice because when He arrived to call Lazarus from the grave, it was Mary who stayed in the house and Martha who went out to greet Him. Even though Lazarus had been dead for four days, Martha told Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.” (John 11:21)

Remember that it was Martha to whom Jesus said: “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.” Jesus even asked her, “Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26)

Her reply confirms just how much Martha’s priorities had changed: “Yes, Lord,” she told him, “I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world.” (John 11:27)

It’s not hard in today’s world to become a little confused about our priorities. Think about it. We’re always trying to steal a moment here and there, or squeeze little more out of life. Yet when our backs get up against the wall, its then that we somehow find the time to look up and ask the Lord for help, finally realising that Jesus was right all along: “Only one thing is needed.”

We try to make life so complicated when the simple truth is; once we put God first in our lives, everything else will fall into place. That doesn’t mean that life will be a bed of roses, but it does mean that God will be there to help us bring order out of chaos. Proverbs 3:6 says it this way: “In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”

I remember the words of a prayer I read more than 20 years ago, and I want to encourage all of us to pray that prayer early in 2012. “This one thing I own, this one thing you want, this one thing I want to keep, this one thing I need to give, OVER TO YOU LORD!”

Often, there is just one thing that will tilt the balances negatively. But if you start at the right place, and that is at the feet of the Lord, it is amazing what will appear in the headlamps of our lives.

 

I believe that Steve Green's song 'when the music fades" summarises the above thoughts well. Oh may we all just come back to a heart of worship where it is all about Him and not about us.