But few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.
What work pleases God?
Simply put, work that pleases God must first be work that He has instructed us to do,be it the work of our hand or the work of our heart. When we look at Mary and Martha, we see many things, but one clear message is that the work of our heart is just as valuable to God as the work of our hand, and in some cases even more! Alternatively, when we study the book of Nehemiah, we clearly see that he was leading others in pleasing God through the work of their hands.
Consider this, if we were expecting guests to come over, and we ask our children to pick up the items in the living room but instead they decide to pick up the items in their room, we may be appreciative but we wouldn’t be pleased. Them doing work but not the work we asked them to do at that moment did not help fulfill the desired result of being prepared for the guests. Them cleaning their room is fulfilling the work of their hand while cleaning the living room reflects an act of obedience and that is a work of the heart. In that moment, we would have been pleased with the act of obedience displayed through cleaning the room we asked them to clean.
This is often what happens with us in our walk with God. We do good work but not the work we have been instructed to do in that season. I believe that the work God is pleased with is the work He has specifically instructed us to do to collaborate with His kingdom vision. When someone tells me that they do not know what that work is, I encourage them to consider the last set of instructions He gave them and start with that.
Was it to start a blog?
Be a caregiver of someone?
Start a business or non-profit?
Go back to school?
Start counseling or coaching?
Relocate to a different state?
Take care of a loved one although it’s inconvenient?
What are the last instructions that He gave you? The fulfillment of this work will be the start of the work that He is pleased with.
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