One thing we never see Jesus do in the gospels is apologize. He challenges His disciples to do things that will be inconvenient or expensive and may completely upend their plans for the future – yet He never apologizes for it. He confronts them harshly at times but never is sorry for hurt feelings. Jesus never says it is ok to put off making a decision about Him until later. Jesus promises that as His disciples, we will be persecuted, and that our faith will possibly turn members of our own families against us, but He doesn’t once apologize for any of that – He just reminds us that it will all be worth it. He expects that we will prioritize everything else around Him (Matthew 10:37; Mark 12:30).
So it is not surprising in Luke 10 to hear Jesus tell Martha, “You are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary.” It’s clear what Jesus is saying about Himself – He is the one necessary thing for which everything else must make space. We need to think about what that means when it comes to what we try to fit into our calendars. If Jesus and His church are not negotiable then everything else has to fit around Him – not the other way around. We don’t take Him out of our lives and set Him aside for three months because our kids are playing baseball. We don’t leave Him out because our weekend is full of other stuff, or because we are tired on Sunday morning. Family time is not more important than the Lord. When you are setting priorities and your calendar, Jesus and His church are the necessities you always leave in.
The reason I include church in that, and not just your relationship to Jesus, is because scripturally you cannot separate the two. The church is the body and bride of Christ. You simply can’t love Jesus but ignore or disregard the church. Your involvement in and care for the church is a reflection of your relationship with Jesus. Don’t let your service to Christ and His Church be of lower quality than what you would give to your employer. Your boss did not save you from your sins. Your company is not your hope for the future – God is. He is your Father and Creator, and He loves you more than your employer ever will.
We serve a mighty King, and he deserves our first and our best.