Morning, Noon, And Night – Tyranny Of The Urgent
April 11, 2021
MORNING, NOON, AND NIGHT – 1
HOW TO AVOID THE TYRANNY OF THE URGENT
A Story of Competing Decisions (Martha and Mary) (vv. 38-40)
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!” Luke 10:38-50
Urgent Things Can Distract Us from More Important, Spiritual Things (Martha)
- Urgent things may seem good
9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ. Philippians 1:9-10, NIV.
- Focus on urgent things often reflects bad theology
Jesus’ Evaluation of the Two Competing Decisions (vv. 41-42)
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 [lit. “good,” NASB; “best,” NET] and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42, NIV
Two Dramatically Different Choices
- Sits at Jesus’ feet – discipleship
- Listens to Jesus’ words
- One thing
- The one necessary thing – commended
- Welcomes Jesus – serves
- Distracted – full of cares and troubles
- Many things
- Many unnecessary things – implied rebuke
- Busy working in the kitchen
How Do We Make Better Choices?
- Follow the Example of Jesus
4 I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do. John 17:4, NASB (see – John 6:38; 8:28-29).
- Remember You Are a Citizen of a Heavenly Kingdom
13 For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son. Colossians 1:13, NASB.
20 But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ. Philippians 3:20, NIV.
- Prioritize Kingdom (important) Matters over Urgent Matters
33 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33, NASB
- We Must Live the “Spiritual Life”
Spiritual life: “Life of Christ reproduced in the life the of the Christian by the power of the Holy Spirit, as the Christian lives by faith through the power of the Spirit in dependence on the truth of God’s Word (Scripture).”
Principle: “The spiritual life is never in neutral – we are either growing more into the likeness of Jesus or we are drifting away from him through distractions.”
Spiritual Renewal Leads to Better Choices
2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:2, NLT.
22 throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. 23 Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24 Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. Ephesians 4:22-24, NLT
9 Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds. 10 Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him. Colossians 3:9-10, NLT.
Spiritual Renewal is a Process, Not Automatic
9 For this reason we also, from the day we heard about you, have not ceased praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so that you may live worthily of the Lord and please him in all respects—bearing fruit in every good deed, growing in the knowledge of God. Colossians 1:9-10, NET. Recall Romans 12:2.
Spiritual Renewal Flows from Spiritual Practices
42 They devoted [prioritized] themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Acts 2:42, NIV.
- Time in the Word
- Time in community
- Time in worship
- Time in prayer
15 So then, be careful how you walk, not as unwise people but as wise, 16 making the most of your time, because the days are evil. Ephesians 5:15-16, NASB.
Principle: “When we ignore the Word of God, we will inevitably substitute something else in its place as our source for values and ethics.”
How to Spend 15 Minutes a Day with Jesus
1. Prayer (A.C.T.S.) – 3 minutes
2. Read and study the Bible – begin with the Gospel of John (one paragraph per day) – 8 minutes
- What does the passage tell me about God?
- What does the passage tell me about Jesus?
- What does the passage tell me about behavior?
- What does the passage mean? (state in one or two sentences)
3. What does the passage tell me to do? S.P.A.C.E. (Application) – 3 minutes
4. Closing prayer – 1 minutes
Note: Habits take between 3 to 6 weeks to develop