LISTEN TO THE MUSIC • Running on Empty – 2/4/24

Overwhelmed, overscheduled, exhausted! This seems to be the general feeling of most people I know, including myself! I hear retirees saying they are busier than they’ve ever been. What’s that about? Retirement used to involve rest, travel, golf. and no big schedule. With so many opportunities available for people of all ages, there’s a lot to either choose or reject. In addition to the “must dos” we jump into all kinds of commitments and activities that consume every free moment and leave us worn and empty. And, most importantly, how is all this busyness effecting our spiritual lives? In the Biblical account of Jesus’ visit to the home of Martha, we see one sister (Mary) choosing to sit at Jesus’ feet to listen and feed her spirit. We have the other sister (Martha) running around in a frenzy cooking, cleaning, and feeling unappreciated. Jesus tells Martha that Mary has chosen the best thing to do, the best way to spend her time. Most of us are more like Martha than Mary. We are worried and distracted by many things and overlook or ignore our need to spend time with Jesus. If it’s not in your schedule, you won’t do it! If it’s important, you put it on the calendar, in your planner. If you want the fullness of life that Jesus promises, you must schedule time for him. It’s time to plan to plan! Set aside time to seriously look at your schedule and plan for those things that truly matter. Daily devotions, prayer, quiet time with God. Block out family time. If there’s something you need to work on such as your finances, health, diet, or a goal you want to achieve, plan for it. Nothing changes until you decide! With God’s help you can make a positive shift. Who do you want to become? What kind of Christian, spouse, parent, friend, employee, or boss, do you want to be? Your schedule will largely determine the outcome.

Scripture: The thief comes only in order to steal, kill, and destroy. I have come in order that you might have life—life in all its fullness. (John 10:10)

Now they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. (Luke 10:38-39)

But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.” (Luke 10:40)

But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:41-42)

Be careful then how you live, not as unwise people but as wise, making the most of the time, because the days are evil. (Ephesians 5:15-16)

When he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, he went to the synagogue on the sabbath day, as was his custom. (Luke 4:16)

“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33)

Questions: How do you spend most of your time (not including work)? What would be the top three things that consume your time? Is time with God on your schedule? Explain. What do you need to cut out of your schedule? What do you need to prioritize in your schedule?

Prayer: Dear Jesus, help me to take time to sit at your feet. Give me the wisdom and courage to cut out of my schedule those things that don’t move me toward the person I want to become. I want to be the person you created me to be, because I know that you bring fullness, joy, and purpose to my life. In Jesus Name I pray, amen.

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