As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 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!”
“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42)
Focus is everything in the spiritual life. It is so easy to get distracted, just ask Martha. It seems that the more we focus on the problems, or the challenges, or the obstacles, or the enormous amount of things to do, the more overwhelmed and frustrated we become. The “many things” dominate us. They cause us to live our lives worried and upset, or, in the Greek, torn in two with many cares.
The truth is that only one care really matters. If we can train our hearts and minds to focus first on Jesus, if we can sit at his feet and listen to what he says rather than be dragged around by the many things pulling on our hearts and minds, then that changes everything. That puts everything else in proper perspective. That allows us to look past the chaos on the surface and instead be ruled by the peace and presence of Christ deep in our hearts and souls. Then we are not dominated by trying to keep all of our plates spinning, but are able to be centered on him instead. The question is, “Will I focus on the plates, or will I focus on the point?”