Mary…sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. “Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.” —Luke 10:39, 42
The long slender oval-shaped window with a magnifying glass icon rests perched at the top of every web page I open. At the click of my mouse, in seconds, I can be reading a recipe for mouthwatering authentic beef bourguignon, analyzing a sunny outdoor living space, checking out the trendiest pair of platform shoes, or searching for a long-lost childhood friend on Facebook.
I attest to the fact that one need never be bored again—the Internet is an endless place of information and entertainment. However, it is also a place of diversion! How often I sit at my desk, ready to begin work on something, and there the blank window sits open, like my personal magic genie. “Come to me… Your search is my command, master.” Ha! Master, my foot!
Is it me mastering the machine or the machine mastering me?
I walk the aisle in the grocery store, spend 20 minutes looking for the brand of Chex cereal we like because there are too many others crowding the shelves. I want to buy some Chex cereal, but should it be Rice Chex, Corn Chex, Wheat Chex, Multi-bran Chex, Honey Nut Chex, Chocolate Chex (My chocoholic granddaughter Lucy would love this!), Cinnamon Chex, or Apple-Cinnamon Chex?
Yikes! No wonder it takes me so long to find what I came in to buy. And just when I figure out the layout of my store (Wheat Chex is on the top right shelf at the end of Aisle 3), they shuffle all the boxes and I am back to 20 minutes of looking! (And that is when I go in knowing exactly what I want to buy.)
Look ladies, when it comes to choices, we need to have some idea before we go shopping right? Am I looking for the greatest deal on earth, the tastiest product, or the one packed with the most nutrition per bite…hmmm? We need to decide before we shop what our criteria should be for making choices.
So many times we go looking on the shelves, distracted by the packaging and clever advertising. Simply put, if you go in with an open mind about shopping, you may end up wasting your time, energy, and money on what doesn’t deliver.
I admit I have found that the Internet can be a huge distraction anytime of the day. Five minutes turns into 15 and faster than I can type Amazon.com, I have wasted another hour! So I had to make some choices and set some boundaries for my growing Internet habit. Before I spend one second skipping around in virtual reality, I would spend time in reality with my Lord.
Mary of Bethany had choices as well—not as many as we do, but there were choices to make, and she made the right one. There was a gathering of Jesus’ disciples at her home. Rooms needed arranging, floors needed sweeping, food needed to be purchased, prepared, and plated. It would fall to the women to do such things, so she and Martha had their work cut out for them.
And yet, above all these good things, which I have no doubt Mary properly accomplished, there was one thing that Mary gave the greatest priority. I can imagine Martha furiously carving red and white roses out of radishes to garnish the salad bowl. And it began to take its toll on both sisters. While Martha continued to be dragged about by her plans, Mary knew it was time to slip out of her apron and join the disciples to sit at Jesus’ feet and listen to His words.
There is always that certain moment when a good thing begins to crowd out the best thing. Can you distinguish when that is? When it’s time to choose to close your laptop, shut off your smart phone? Instead, pick up the Book, and hear His voice. Remember, only you can choose that good portion, and with God’s help, you can make the right choice!