One of the easiest things to do in the world is to come up with an excuse to not pursue or spend intentional time with God.
In Luke 10, Mary had what she thought was a righteous excuse and even got offended that her sister, Martha, left her to work in the kitchen by herself. She was likely preparing food and drinks for Jesus Himself as He sat and shared lessons and stories in the living room with the rest of the group. But Martha had made up her mind. She wasn’t giving that time up for anything.
Just a chapter earlier, Jesus heard a different excuse straight to His face why someone didn’t have time to become a disciple. “I’ll come along once my father is buried,” he said boldly.
“Of course, I understand,” Jesus said.
Actually, He didn’t say that.
If Jesus lived in our time, we would have absolutely expected Him to respond in such a way, though, right? Sickness and death in the family is the one excuse that can’t be topped for us. But that’s not how Jesus rolled. He made it very clear that the kingdom of God is more important even than our quality of life on Earth. He seemed to believe that God’s kingdom was the entire point of this life to begin with.
Yes, things have to get done. But the present is fading away with every moment, giving way to eternity. Every second that passes is not only un-guaranteed but also un-returnable, bringing us closer to the absolutely-guaranteed moment when all of this we see will be gone. And not just gone–meaningless.
I can’t imagine getting to the end of my life, seeing just how unspeakably amazing Jesus is, and wishing I had only watched more movies and TV shows, or scrolled just a little more through Facebook. Who could possibly see how real Jesus is and think to themselves, Man, if only I had one more chance to play that video game.
It may sound ridiculous, but our priorities and schedules are speaking on our behalf.
When I’m staring out over eternity, I’m going to wonder why I didn’t live with a greater focus on what had always been so clearly more important than anything I could have achieved during my former life. Compared to what I will be about to experience, I’m not even sure it could even be called “life.” How sad it would be if I had nothing stored up in heaven because I thought it would be more worth my while to accumulate all I could in the world. Eternity was never more important than those few, distorted years that will, at that point, seem shorter and shorter in this new place where time itself is a foreign concept.
If we were eternally focused, what excuse could there possibly be?