I just get so annoyed at Jesus! Not in general, but in specific. Yes, that Mary & Martha story again. Come on already!
Here’s my version of the story in Luke 10:38-42: Jesus shows up, unannounced, with at least 12 guys in tow. You know they walked there, right?!? So, when a group of men walk somewhere, you know they are hungry! This small crowd of hungry men tromp in her house and Jesus starts teaching them some stuff.
What does Mary do? Sit at his feet.
What does Martha do? She is frustrated! She says to her sister, “Seriously? Get in here and help me!” The woman remains on her behind. GRRR…
Poor Martha, sweat dripping down her back as she throws together a Middle Eastern meal (Have you ever had one of those? They put out quite the spread!), irritated that she actually has to tell her sister to get off her duff and then what? She asks Jesus to tell Mary to help her and holy guacamole, Jesus tells her to chill out. WHAT?! “Mary has chosen the better thing.”
Are you kidding me?
I have struggled my entire life with this story. Things need to get done. Things need to get done for Jesus himself! Otherwise, he’s gonna have to whip some more bread and fishes outta nowhere. What does it even look like in real life to “choose the better thing?!?” How do I, in all practicality, sit at the feet of Jesus? How do I choose what is better like Mary did? How do I put that in practice in my life when the Creator of the Universe has made me a Martha? He made me a doer. It’s how I serve him. I use the gifts he has given me to do things to bring him glory. It’s true worship for me.
Back the truck up. Maybe, just maybe, it’s all about timing. Jesus wasn’t telling her not to feed his homeboys. He wasn’t telling her not to serve him. He was telling her that right now, the better thing, was to listen to what he was teaching.
Light bulb moment!
I do that!
When I study (yes, study – the Creator also molded me for more information!) the Scriptures and dig down deep, I am being Mary because I’m tuning my spiritual ears to what God has to say. I’m trying to learn just like she was.
When I am “all in” worshiping at church…or…in my minivan…to a favorite song, I’m spiritually sitting at his feet.
When I listen to others preach from the Word of God, I am quieting my soul for His Voice.
when I sit on my patio
with my cup of coffee
in the quiet of the morning
listening to the birds and
watching the squirrels and
basking in the silence,
As a result, I’ve let go of the guilt that comes with knowing this story and knowing I’m a Martha. I’ve found that I can be Mary too and that doesn’t necessarily mean abandoning the tasks he has called me to do, but it’s about timing. Prioritizing the Mary part of me with the Martha part of me so that I can listen to him, learn from him, worship him with all that I am.
So, if you are a Martha too, let go of the guilt and find the ways that you already are Mary. Prioritize to balance them in your life.
And if you are a Mary…get in the kitchen so your sister isn’t so ticked! She could use some help you know! 😉