In Luke 10:38, Jesus is traveling through a village when He stops and is welcomed into the home of Martha. Now, I would assume Martha was excited about having Jesus stop by and like most of us, when we have unexpected guests, we spend most of the time trying to see if they need anything, rather than visiting with them. For Martha, she was busy trying to serve Jesus that she didn’t have time to listen to Him. Her sister, Mary, on the other hand, was sitting at the feet of Jesus listening to everything He had to say. Yes, here Jesus is in their home and He was probably hungry and thirsty but He didn’t come to be served, He came so that He might serve them. Martha missed it. So now she is upset and she says to Jesus, in verse 40, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her to help me!” Yet, instead of Jesus telling Mary to go and help her sister, He replies in verse 41 (to Martha), “You are worried and upset about many things. But only one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, and it will not be taken away from her.” Please understand and read this carefully, serving Jesus is great and it is what we should do but sometimes we have to take a pause from service in order to listen.
Think about it. When you are a professional in whatever field of study you are in, do you not have to be recertified every now and then? For a teacher, they have to come from in front of the class to now be the student. For a preacher/leader, you have to sometimes step down from the pulpit and be a pupil. This isn’t done as a mark against you but sometimes you need to be taught/fed too because if you continually serve, when will you have time to eat? Yes, I know you’re in leadership but sometimes you need to sit down because if you don’t, you just may miss the lesson in the listening. This is why the bible says in Proverbs 9:9, “Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.” Taking a moment to refuel (being served) will not weaken your witness but it will strengthen your service.