The Lord answered, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things. One thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the better part. It won’t be taken away from her.” – Luke 10:38-42
Okay, so it’s not exactly a Winter Wonderland in Wake Forest – but it is our first snow of 2018 and we have been experiencing exceptionally frigid temperatures for a good long stretch. Plus I love the tabula rasa image of the fresh snow – even if it’s only a little.
This light dusting actually facilitates one of my active intentions for 2018, and that is to engage life with less hurry and more applied mellow. We talked about this at my men’s group Wednesday evening and agreed that the “less is more” equation most certainly applies when it comes to being faithful disciples of Jesus.
I’m much more receptive to the idea of holding “active intentions” than making resolutions. Resolutions seem trite, contrived, and disposable, but being more deliberate when it comes to following Jesus is a new every morning decision with implications that will provoke transformation across the board.
I asked each man what his vision is for 2018, and where he felt God is leading. Rather than resolutions like “lose weight”, “stop cussing”, or “keep my desk clean”, my friends talked about goals such as helping facilitate less divisiveness, practicing humility, focusing on the positive, and being evangelists for the kind of love, and support, and encouragement we experience at our church.
When we talked about what resources we have at hand to help us, the answer was the same in every instance: “Walk more closely with Jesus.”
This leads me back to where I started my thoughts this morning. By attending to “One Thing” rather than frenetically dancing from task to task or resolution to resolution, I will move beyond shallowness and futility and fall into step with Jesus.
When the cadence of Jesus is also mine – when I walk in his rhythm, I am not hurried and I am not distracted and I am not frustrated. Instead, I will be transformed.
Jesus shakes his head: “Derek, Derek, you are worried and distracted by many things. One thing is necessary. It is time for you to choose the better part. It won’t be taken away from you.”
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.