This Easter Season, I have spent much time contemplating the record in the New Testament about the interactions, and teachings of our Savior Jesus Christ. This morning I have spent time pondering the story of Mary and Martha, and how it applies to us Single Adults today.

christus jesus christ mormonMary, Martha, and their brother Lazarus lived together in the small town of Bethany. They were all beloved friends and followers of Jesus Christ. The fact that Jesus felt safe, and welcome in their home as testified by His often visiting them whenever He was in the area, speaks much of what sort of people they were. There is one particular visit to Mary and Martha however, which has occupied my mind these last few days. In his book, Jesus the Christ, President James E. Talmage speaks of this visit,

“Martha was housekeeper, and therefore she assumed responsibility for the proper treatment of the distinguished Guest. While she busied herself with preparations and “was cumbered about much serving,” well intended for the comfort and entertainment of Jesus, Mary sat at the Master’s feet, listening with reverent attention to His words. Martha grew fretful in her bustling anxiety, and came in, saying: “Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.” She was talking to Jesus but really at Mary. For the moment she had lost her calmness in undue worry over incidental details… He replied to her complaining words with marked tenderness: “Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: but one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.”

There was no reproof of Martha’s desire to provide well; nor any sanction of possible neglect on Mary’s part… He desired not well-served meals and material comforts only, but the company of the sisters, and above all their receptive attention to what He had to say. He had more to give them than they could possibly provide for Him.” James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ pg 433, 434

Christ had something most precious to give to His dear friends, and yet one of them almost missed receiving it; because she was caught up with doing that which she thought was important.

This to me is such a powerful lesson in how I need to prioritize my life. Too often I find myself, like Martha before me, filling my time with good things at the expense of that which is better. This I believe is a major problem with Single Adults. We are being distracted, and detoured, and overwhelmed by all the good things in our lives that we too often lose sight completely of the better or best things. In his October 2007 General Conference Address, Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, said about this,

“We should begin by recognizing the reality that just because something is good is not a sufficient reason for doing it. The number of good things we can do far exceeds the time available to accomplish them. Some things are better than good, and these are the things that should command priority attention in our lives.” Good, Better, Best, Elder Dallin H. Oaks, October 2007 General Conference

So how do we discern what the better part is? How do I know what is most needful? For what is most needful in one moment is not in another? For this, all I can say is to trust in the Holy Spirit to guide us. We as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been given the most precious gift of the companionship of the Holy Ghost if we will but be worthy and receive it.

The spirit will, as Nephi told his brethren, show us all things which we should do. He will guide us when we know not what to do. He will help us to always see the better part. And he will give us course corrections when we have made the wrong choices. When we follow the spirit, we are always right, and have nothing to fear.

About Julia G

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