Sunday, February 12, 2006

The Lord's Desire

Fellowship. What does that word mean to you? Some may think of a few friends getting together for Monday Night Football and pizza. Some might envision an Elks’ or Lions’ club meeting, or a bridge game. Some I’m sure think of family get-togethers, or even going to church. Webster’s dictionary defines it as “companionship”, and “the quality and state of being comradely”. Whatever you consider a time of fellowship to be, one thing is certain- Jesus was a person who loved good fellowship.

One day Jesus and his disciple’s came into Bethany, to the house of Martha, Mary and Lazarus. Theses were good friends and supporters of Jesus. He had been out doing ministry, healing people, casting out demons, preaching, and dealing with those who sought to tear down his ministry. Perhaps Jesus needed a break from all the action. So he came into the house of his friends.

I can imagine everyone gathered around the Lord, laughing and joking, and having a good time (yes, Jesus knows how to have fun, friends!). And they were listening to him. They heard what he preached and taught, and they hung on every word. Well, everyone but Martha, that is. She wasn’t out in the family room with Jesus and the gang. No, she could be found in the kitchen, frantically rushing to prepare a good meal for Jesus. And she was getting more upset be the second. Finally, Martha had all she could take. Let’s read what happened:

As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a village where a woman named Martha welcomed them into her home. Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord's feet, listening to what he taught. But Martha was worrying over the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, "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." But the Lord said to her, "My dear Martha, you are so upset over all these details! There is really only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it-and I won't take it away from her." Luke 10:38-42

You see, what was really important that day wasn’t the food, or a clean house. What was important was taking the time to fellowship with Jesus. We can get so “Martha-minded” today, can’t we? We insist on doing work for Jesus, but he wants us to spend more time with him, sitting at his feet, so –to-speak, to learn from him, and just enjoy his presence.

That was in a time when the religious folks thought that by doing good works, and keeping the smallest detail of rabbinical law, they could please God. God does have work for us to do, mind you, but not at the expense of time spent with him. My kids could sit in their rooms all day and clean them for me, but not at the expense of coming down and sitting with me, playing games with me, just because they love me. I think that Jesus is the same. We can’t let our works for him replace our relationship with him.

It was this way from the very beginning. God created man, not because he was bored one day, but because he desired fellowship. God would walk with Adam in the Garden in the cool of the day, enjoying Adam’s fellowship. Friends, that hasn’t changed. Because of the sacrifice of Christ, and his blood he shed, we have been given access to his throne of grace. We can enter his presence. In fact, he is with us in the person of the Holy Spirit.

Friends, it’s my prayer that you are blessed by this simple message today. Take the time to get into the prayer closet, and spend some time with the Savior. I leave you with one of my favorite verses in the whole Bible, one that speaks so clearly our need to have fellowship with our Savior. Psalm 27:4 says, “One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to meditate in His temple.”

God bless you this day!

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