There is a lot going on in the world and amazingly, there is still more to come. With personal hectic and demanding schedules, and external distractions seeking to corrupt or derail our Christian walk, it is sometimes challenging to know what is most important when it comes to our relationship with the Lord. We are a generation of “3 things” or “7 principles”, and don’t have neither the time or patience to dig through information to get to the crux of what we need. Nonetheless many years ago, different Biblical characters of different dispensations each wrote of one thing we need to focus on.
Our first character is King David. This was a man who started out as a shepherd boy looking after sheep, and became a king leading God’s people. Till date, he is known as the greatest king Israel ever had. David’s legacy was riddled with many victories and some failures but overall God esteemed him highly. God said of Him, “I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart [conforming to My will and purposes], who will do all My will.” [Acts 13:22, AMP]. If we were to sit at King David’s feet and ask Him what one thing He would tell us to be mindful of, he would point to your desire. In Psalms 27:4, he said “One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in his temple”. King David knew the importance of desires because they gave birth to what we pursue. That is why as Christians we are greatly advantaged as new creations because “For it is [not your strength, but it is] God who is effectively at work in you, both to will and to work [that is, strengthening, energizing, and creating in you the longing and the ability to fulfill your purpose] for His good pleasure” [Philippians 2:13, AMP]. That yearning and desiring for the Lord is what stirs up the work of God in our lives, to will and to do of His good pleasure. When you look at your life, what are your current desires and what are you seeking after? Are they the things that King David is drawing our attention to? Are we seeking first the Kingdom of God and its righteousness? Are we desiring and seeking after the Lord through our quiet times and personal Bible Study? What is your heart yearning for?
Unlike King David whose legacy ended on a positive note, King Solomon started well but ended poorly. Yet, even he had a “one thing” advice for us which was, “the last and final word is this: Fear God. Do what he tells you.” [Ecclesiastes 12:13, MSG]. After the wealth that Solomon came into, the great wisdom God endowed Him with, the peace he enjoyed in his kingdom, the many wives and literally not lacking anything his eyes saw, Solomon concluded that “all is vanity”. This echoes the words of Jesus when He said “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” [Matthew 8:36, KJV]. Jesus also said that the way we prove our love for Him and for God is by keeping his commandments. So the measure of our love for God is what King Solomon is advising us to do; “fear God. Do what he tells you”.
Then the great Apostle Paul, the one who first tormented and caused much harm to the church but later suffered many afflictions for the name of Christ said, “one thing I do [it is my one aspiration]: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,I press on toward the goal to win the [supreme and heavenly] prize to which God in Christ Jesus is calling us upward.” [Philippians 3:13, AMPC]. As Apostle Paul made advancement for the Lord around the world, there were some who would remind him of his history of causing great harm to the body of Christ. When he would take 10 steps forward, there was someone to meet him to remind him of how his life was before he met Christ. There were those that would also remind him of the great success he had attained as a Jew before meeting Christ, and would mock him for leaving that great success for this life of suffering. There were the great trials and tribulations he endured for the sake of Christ. Then there was Apostle Paul himself, who would look at all the churches that had been established through his ministry and the advancement that had come to the kingdom of God through him. With all these, it was easy to lost focus on what was most important and who was most important, which is Jesus. That is why he resolved to do one thing, to forget the failures and successes and to focus on the assignment the Lord had given him.
Finally, the Lord Jesus summed it all up when he visited Martha, Mary and Lazarus. During this visit, Martha putting her hospitality skills to use while Mary sat at the feet of Jesus listening to him. This happens to us when our relationship with the Lord is filled with more ministerial activities, than spending quality time fellowshipping with him. The Lord saw the multitude of Martha’s activities and had to caution her to focus on what was most important. Jesus said, “Martha, dear Martha, you’re fussing far too much and getting yourself worked up over nothing. One thing only is essential, and Mary has chosen it—it’s the main course, and won’t be taken from her.” [Luke 10:41-42, MSG]. When it comes to your walk with Christ, do you find yourself consistently sitting at the Master’s feet eating the main meal or are you being a busy-body trying to cook the Master the main meal, when he is the provider of all great meals? Then, “Martha, Martha, you’re fussing far too much”.
As the world continues to grapple for your affections, attention and intentions, remember these “one things”. Remember that you should desire and seek to dwell in the presence of the Lord, to fear God and do what He says, to sit at the Master’s feet and to forget all that is past and press on towards the mark of the High calling.