The Better Thing Remains - Encouragement Café - December 25, 2017

The Better Thing Remains

By Noelle Dey

Monday, December 25, 2017

“(b)ut few things are needed--or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:42 NIV

The remediation team had opened our Christmas box.  Handcrafted ornaments, nativity wedding gifts, heirloom photographs… each item was held up to my husband.  One by one. 

It was his task to decide which to keep and which to discard.

Black mold infiltrated our home.  Similar to fire devastation, we have lost far more than we salvaged.  But there’s an interesting twist.  Unlike fire or floods, we cannot see the lethal mycotoxins.  Nor can the experts. 

But we can feel the physical implications.

When I educated myself on mycotoxins, I learned that they are used in biological warfare.  Mold is the gun.  Mycotoxins are the bullets.

So each item we attempt to salvage comes with the price tag of risk.  Even with intense professional cleaning, lethal substances can still hold on.

Galatians 4:4-5 paints the unadulterated beauty of Christmas.  Its simplicity is profound.  

“But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.”

So, why can this miraculous season exhaust me?  Because I’ve let mycotoxin-like warfare creep in.  There is a real enemy we can’t see with our eyes. 

He seeks to steal, kill and destroy the true meaning of Christmas. Instead of simply celebrating Jesus as my Savior, I feel the effects of an unending to-do list.  

Martha could relate.  She and her sister had the same opportunity you and I have today: to be still and marvel in our relationship with Jesus.

Warfare infiltrated Martha’s heart.  Her mycotoxins came in the form of busyness.  Mind you, her to-do list was all for Jesus.  It looked valiant on the surface. 

Mary, on the other hand, reveled in Jesus love for her. 

If Mary was with us now, she would be the one with the pared-down Christmas box.  If we peeked inside, we would only find the “better.”  And the “better” is Jesus Himself. 

When you open your Christmas box, are you like me?  Can you find things to discard?  Things that are good, but not “better”? 

Make a simple list of things that remind you of Martha’s busyness.  Together, you and I can conquer Christmas warfare as we simplify. Let’s bring back the Christ in Christmas.  I’m breathing better already.  How about you? 

Oh Papa, I’ll admit my Christmas box has accumulated clutter.  Show me in practical ways what activities, traditions and things to keep and what to discard.  I want to choose the “better” and keep Jesus the focus of my Christmas celebration.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

© 2017 by Noelle Dey.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Monday, 25 December 2017.