“But Martha was distracted with all her preparations; and she came up to Him and said, ‘Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone? Then tell her to help me.’… Mary has chosen the good part and it will not be taken from her.” Luke 10:40-42”
Carbon monoxide is known as a “silent killer.” It is a colorless, tasteless, and odorless gas that can kill you without you even realizing what is happening. Because of this many homes now have detectors that sound an alarm if the air you breathe has become contaminated with too much of this gas.
We need a similar spiritual detector for guilt. We were created to live in response to God’s grace in a place where our relationship with Him is the priority. When guilt begins to infect us we lose track of the main event, as Martha did, and end up with the “bad part.” As carbon monoxide kills us slowly physically, guilt based living slowly kills us spiritually. It takes the “want to” of grace and turns it into the “have to” of man-made religion. Christ died to “cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God.” (Hebrews 9:14) He wants to expose guilt based living so that He can cleanse us and empower us to live by His grace.
Here are three detectors of guilt based living:
- I’m serving God but no longer enjoying God. God doesn’t take us from the place of delighting in Him, but we can easily lose it. Martha allowed her serving to be so central that she was distracted from fellowship with the Lord.
- I’m serving God but no longer enjoying people. Martha felt it was her duty to fix Mary. When you’re trying to fix people you are no longer able to enjoy them.
- I feel like it is my responsibility to meet the expectations of those around me. If you can’t say “no” to those who ask for help then I fear that you can never really say “yes” to them. You have become a slave to guilt, and any need will get you moving. God wants more for us!
Mary chose the good part and Jesus is inviting us to choose it as well. No more guilt; only His grace. Have you made that choice?