Saturday, July 29, 2006

Are Your Ducks In a Row?

The last Journal entry that John Wesley ever made was on October 24, 1790. The aged Anglican cleric penned these words:

"Sunday, 24.--l explained, to a numerous congregation in Spitalfields church, 'the whole armor of God.' St. Paul's, Shadwell, was still more crowded in the afternoon, while I enforced that important truth, 'One thing is needful'; and I hope many, even then, resolved to choose the better part."

This phrase, "One thing is needful" is from a meal Jesus attended:

"Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, 'Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.' But the Lord answered her, 'Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary [needful, KJV]. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.'" (Luke 10.38-42 ESV)

Wesley's Explanatory Notes is quite direct; he writes, "Mary hath chosen the good part - To save her soul. Reader, hast thou?"

Reader, hast thou?

Do you have a direct relationship with the Triune God made possible only by the death and resurrection of the incarnate God-Man, the Lord Jesus? If you were to slip into Eternity in the next moment, would you be ready to give an account of your life before Christ? Could you say that you were busy about his business, or would you feel shame at a squandered life?

In his Sermons, # 17, "The Circumcision of the Heart", Wesley preached:

"Have no end, to ultimate end, but God. Thus our Lord: 'One thing is needful:' And if thine eye be singly fixed on this one thing, 'thy whole body shall be full of light.'"

Are your priorities correct? Is God at the top of the list? Is God your ultimate end? To use a modern colloquialism, do you have your ducks in a row?