I love writing blog posts. I have been blogging for Sabbath School Net for just over ten years now. I have had my personal blog for 14 years. I have been preaching ever since I was 15. A friend was surprised the other day, when I told her I love writing blog posts ever bit as much if not more than preaching. I love learning and sharing what I have learned. I love connecting with the world, while sitting on my comfy sofa in my pajamas with my laptop. That must be why I love blogging more than preaching. I can’t preach in my pajamas. I also love hearing from people all over the world as they comment on my posts, and share their thoughts and what they have learned, from their personal Bible study time.
And personal Bible study time is where I am going with this. oh no! I just started a sentence with a conjunction and ended it with an adjective. two no no’s in the same sentence. My college composition professor would be turning over in his grave if he could see this. But guess what? I’m not writing a blog post this week, so I don’t have to worry about my grammar. Back to the personal Bible study time. As much as I love writing and preaching, sometimes I don’t have anything new or relevant to share. As sermon and blog deadlines approach I start feeling pressured. I start studying my Bible for new ideas and get frustrated if I can’t find anything. I start relating more with Martha than with Mary. You know the story, when Jesus visits Martha and Mary, and Mary is just visiting with Jesus while Martha was busy doing all the work.
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.” Luke 10:40-42 NKJV
Often when I am substitute teaching at school I have to tell the kids to put away their distractions and get to work, but Martha was distracted by her work. Her work was the distraction. Martha was so busy preparing a meal she forgot Jesus was the main attraction and not the meal. I love studying my Bible and preparing blog posts and sermons when the ideas and revelations just seem to flow. But I get frustrated when I feel pressured to come up with something new and can’t. That’s when I have to tell myself to stop trying to be like Martha and just be like Mary. I have to open my Bible and tell myself not to worry about preparing a spiritual meal for anyone. I don’t mean to be irreverent by saying this, but when I study God’s Word instead of it being about a sermon or blog post preparation, I just like to chill with God. I love and treasure the moments in His Word when He speaks to me as His own child and not just His spokesperson. I love it when He shows me something just between the two of us, that is not meant for the rest of the world to see or hear. I love reading my Bible without an agenda! No deadlines to meet, no thinking about how to fit this into a blog post or sermon. I remember those nights so long ago as a little child laying in bed at night talking to Jesus like we were best friends having a slumber party. No sermons, no blog posts, just me and my best friend hanging out together because we loved each other.
I don’t mean to make this about me. It’s really about you. What brought you here right now? Are you just chilaxing and studying right now, enjoying reading what others have to say? Then great! Are you preparing for Sabbath school class, maybe even preparing to teach and everything is perfectly falling in place as you put your lesson together? Wonderful! However, if you are trying to put your lesson together and nothing seems to be falling into place and here it is Friday already, don’t worry. Relax. Chill. Stop feeling like a Martha thinking you have to prepare all the time. God didn’t just create you to teach Sabbath School. He created you to be His child. He created you to be His best friend. Just borrow Michael Fracker’s lesson plan this week. It’s perfectly fine. Its not cheating. Pick up your Bible with no lesson plan, sermon preparation or agenda in mind, and just chill with your Best Friend. Don’t let lesson plans and sermon preparations distract you from what your relationship with Jesus is really all about. After all, the Bible is not just a book to prepare you for eternity. The Bible takes us into God’s presence here and now. The Bible is not just a reference book to help you write sermons and prepare Sabbath School lesson plans. The Bible is God’s love story written to you.
Like the title says, I am not writing a blog post this week. Jesus and I are having a slumber party again tonight. This is not a blog post. This is your invitation. You are invited. Let’s leave our preparation agendas behind and take our Bibles and just chill with Jesus tonight. It’s okay you don’t have to be a Martha tonight. You can be a Mary, because there will be no pastors, Bible workers or Sabbath school teachers at the party. Only best friends of Jesus.