At the Home of Martha and Mary
38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary,who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
41 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
I am sending my son off to college this fall. My husband and I believe this is the right thing to do for our son, because it is a step toward his future. He will learn and grow and be more prepared for a bright future after 4 years of college. All of the money, time, and hard work will pay off at some point. At least that is what we are telling ourselves.
Did you know that the greatest predictor of the future is the present? Whatever you are doing right now, today, is the greatest predictor of what your future will look like. I don’t know about you, but that is a bit of a scary thought.
Most of us are really bad at the future. It’s why diets and exercise plans fail. It’s why planning for retirement feels like a risk rather than a plan. We get overwhelmed with the future and the process it takes to achieve something, so we live for today.
We all do it. It’s easier to live for today than to wrap our brains around the future. But whether we realize it or not, we are living for the future. Whatever we do today is sending us one step closer to a very specific future. Skipping your workout today isn’t a big deal, but it is a step in a certain direction. Eating that doughnut, in and of itself, isn’t a problem, but it is moving you along a particular path. Failing to study for a test or prepare for a meeting one time isn’t in and of itself detrimental, but it is absolutely moving you in a particular direction. Your spiritual life has a future, too. What you do with God right now (or don’t do) is leading you to a very specific kind of future with God. And the great thing about your spiritual present and future is that God will help you navigate all the rest. As you spend time in the loving presence of God, you shine a light on the path forward in all areas of your life. Time with God should be the first step you take every day. Mary understood this in her soul. She knew that being in the presence of Christ was the most important thing she could do, while Martha was busy making preparations and plans. Both are important, but one should always come first.
I will say again, the present is the greatest predictor of your future. What you’re doing today is probably exactly what you’ll be doing tomorrow, and the day after that, and ten years from now. If you want to change your future, start with the present and presence of God.
Heavenly Creator, Thank you for the pattern of new life you set in the world. Thank you that all of life is redeemable. Create in me a renewed spirit, new life, growth toward your righteousness. Keep me rooted in your love. Find in me the least desirable parts and let your light shine on them for healing and redemption. I am yours completely, Lord. May your will be done in my life each day. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen.
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version ® NIV ®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.