At times like this, it is essential that preachers focus on the primary source of that transformative power—relationship with God. The power to change life resides in God alone. Ministers have a tendency to replace being with God with doing for God. When the balance between being and doing suffers, the flow of transformational power also suffers. Doing without being allows for depersonalization to slip into a preacher’s consciousness, and intimacy begins to grow stale. We begin to see God as the “boss” we work for and not the friend or lover the Scriptures describe Him to be. As intimacy decreases, preachers start to go through the familiar motions and do out of a sense of duty rather than love. sad to say for many preachers, its business as usual – or it that “busyness as usual?”
Jesus wished Martha would just come and sit with Mary and Him in conversation and fellowship rather than doing additional busywork (Luke 10:41,42). He told the sisters that there are only a few things necessary and that intimacy was at the top of His list. Preachers often abandon the simplicity of the gospel—the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ—in favor of doing things in His name (2 Cor. 11:2,3). It’s easy to lose perspective when buildings and board meetings demand our attention. People fuss, get married, need counseling, and die at unpredictable times. To be sure, there is no faith without works (James 2:18-24), but we can’t forget that God yearns for our friendship. After all, love is who He is at the very core of His being.
At times like this, one of the biggest risks preachers face is getting too busy with things that are less important. People are looking for answers. God is ultimately the source of those answers, but will He find too many Martha’s preoccupied with their ministry business to sit at His feet and listen? It’s time to be Mary. The world is counting on us for substance. As ministers, let’s give God what He is yearning for, so we can give the world what they need so badly.