There is a definite difference between the life that is separated unto prayer and the life that has separated from prayer. One has the power of God flowing through it and the other is powerless. We must understand that Jesus is the vine and we are only the branches. (Jn. 15:5). As long as we stay connected to the life-source then we will walk in His power.
Paul encouraged the Christians in Ephesus with these words: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might,” (Eph. 6:10). We walk in His power as long as we are in fellowship and communion with Him.
In Luke 10:38-42 we read a story that shows us a ironic turn of passionate actions: Now it happened as Jesus and others went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word.
But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.” And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”
In this passage, we see two different sides of Christianity or our relationship with the Lord. There’s the one side that loves God and out of duty is service oriented and the other side is out of devotion, oriented around absorbing who He is. The passage says that Martha was distracted because she was preoccupied with serving Jesus. Service is not wrong and actually, it is necessary for every Christian. But, after seeing Mary just sitting with Jesus, Martha complained. You can imagine the tone of her voice, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me,” (Luke 10:40).
Jesus declared that she was distracted because of her serving. Our service must be balanced with right priorities. Jesus said that there is one thing that is needed and Mary was doing that one thing. What was she doing? She was sitting at Jesus’s feet hearing His words. She had caught a lifestyle of power through her connection into the vine. There’s a time and place for serving and then there is a time to sit at His feet. When we’re in His presence it’s not time to get up and do good things, it’s time to sit and listen.
In Psalm 91:1 we read, “He who dwells in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” Mary was in Jesus’ shadow in the secret place of the most high. That’s where His blessing is. We can only be successful servants once we have sat at His feet in the place of prayer.
Bill Virgin and his wife Laurie pastor Life Christian Center in Lees Summit. They have been in the ministry for over 30 years. Bill holds a doctorate of Theology and is passionate to see Gods people walking in the love and power of God.