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August 3, 2017

Broaden Your Life by Narrowing Your Focus

But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Matthew 6:33 (NIV)

Steve Uzzell said, “Multitasking is merely the opportunity to screw up more than one thing at the same time.” Studies show that trying to focus on more than one thing causes a 40% drop in productivity. (That’s 2.1 hours a day that’s lost due to interruptions or distractions.) Jesus told us that, if we would focus on one thing, it would change everything! In other words, if you want to broaden your life, you must narrow your focus. By focusing on this one thing, we could reduce our stress and increase our productivity while, at the same time, having all our needs met. What is the one thing that changes everything? It’s a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. Maybe you’re thinking, “That sounds great, but how? How do I have a growing relationship with Jesus Christ?” Great question! The answer is two-fold:

  • Let Christ love you.
  • Give Christ the first and best of your life.

These sound so simple. The problem is that life happens, and we are easily distracted. This was the case of a woman named Martha. You can read her story in Luke 10:38-42. Jesus came to her house to visit her and her sister, Mary, and their brother, Lazarus. While Mary sat at Jesus’ feet listening to Him speak, Martha was distracted with all her preparations. When you read their story, you quickly see the contrast between a focused life and a distracted life. It wasn’t long before Martha became upset that Mary wasn’t helping her. She vented her anger to Jesus when she asked Him,

“Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Tell her to help me.”  (Vs. 40)

I love how Jesus responded to her.

“Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only ONE THING is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.”  (Vs. 41-42)

While we all want to have a heart like Mary, most of us get as distracted as Martha, and our stress levels show it. A lot of what we think is important is really a distraction, and what we think are distractions may be divine appointments! If we are to have a growing relationship with Jesus Christ, we must let Christ love us; to do that, we must sit at His feet, as Mary did, to listen to what He has to say.

So many people know about Jesus but do not really know Him. I think it’s fascinating that of all the disciples, Mary was the only one who took His words to heart about His death on the cross.  We find her in John 12 anointing Jesus’ body for burial with expensive perfume that was worth a year’s wages. This extravagant gift was an expression of her love for Christ and evidence that she heard what He was trying to tell them. She didn’t need to go to the tomb with the other women to anoint Him after His death because she sat at His feet and understood the depth of His love for her. I wonder what Jesus would like to say to you and me if we would just let Him love us. To let Christ love you like that, you must sit at His feet and listen.