I woke up this morning with the phrase “one thing” going through my mind. I began to think of a few well known Scriptures with the phrase “one thing” and began to search it out. When we are looking for answers, God’s Word should be the first place we turn. The Bible tells us about such deep theological things as the origin of man, sin and man’s fall, man’s need for redemption and his redemption via the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, while at the same time showing us how to live out our everyday lives. There are multiple instances when God’s Word wants us to “keep one thing in mind” as we read Scripture.
One Thing #1-As He did with the Israelites, God will keep His promises
“And behold, this day I am going the way of all the earth: and ye know in all your hearts and in all your souls, that not one thing hath failed of all the good things which the Lord your God spake concerning you; all are come to pass unto you, and not one thing hath failed thereof.” (Joshua 23:14, KJV, emphasis mine).
One Thing #2- We should seek to dwell in God’s presence
“One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in His temple. For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion: in the secret of His tabernacle shall He hide me; He shall set me upon a rock.” (Psalm 27:4-5, KJV, emphasis mine).
One Thing #3- The same fate awaits us all
“For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no pre-eminence above a beast: for all is vanity.” (Ecclesiastes 3:19, KJV, emphasis mine).
One Thing #4- We must let go of worldly things holding us back
The Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke tell the story about a young, rich ruler who sought Jesus to find out what he needed to do to inherit eternal life. The rich young ruler informed Jesus that he had kept all of God’s commandments from his youth. However, Jesus addressed the “one thing” holding back the rich young ruler.
“Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, ‘One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.’ And he was said at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.” (Mark 10:21-22, KJV, emphasis mine).
One Thing #5- We need to stop being busy and just listen to Jesus
Luke tells the story of Jesus at the house of Mary and Martha, Lazarus’ sisters. Martha was busy preparing a large meal while Mary sat at Jesus’ feet and listened to His teaching. Martha became frustrated and basically asked Jesus “Don’t you care that my sister isn’t helping me?”
“And Jesus answered and said unto her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.’” (Luke 10:41-42, NKJV, emphasis mine).
One Thing #6- No matter what the world says, testify about Jesus
John chapter 9 tells the story of Jesus healing a man who was blind from birth. As word spread around town about the man’s healing, the formerly blind man and his parents were brought in before the Pharisees, who questioned them about Jesus. The Pharisees tried to make the claim that Jesus was a sinner and tried to discount the man’s healing.
“So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, ‘Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.’ He answered and said, ‘Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.’” (John 9:24-25, NKJV, emphasis mine).
One Thing #7- In order to go forward with Christ, let go of the past
“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:13-14, KJV, emphasis mine).
One Thing #8- God is patient and desires all to repent
“But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is long-suffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:8-9, KJV, emphasis mine).
As we live out our Christian walks, let us always try to keep at least one thing in mind when we go through trials. The Lord may be trying to teach us patience, give us perspective, reveal truth to us, show us how to be compassionate and merciful to others, or simply wanting us to draw closer to Him. May the Lord bless you.