Mary and Martha were like a lot of siblings—they loved each other like crazy, and sometimes they just drove each other crazy. Can you relate?
This story about them always makes me laugh—Martha asks the Son of God to help her settle a little sisterly spat.
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. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her” (Luke 10:38-42).
Can you envision the scene? Martha’s working in the kitchen, making sure the beans don’t overcook and the roast doesn’t burn. She’s got sweat on her forehead and flour on her cheek. Steam’s rising from the stove, and a little is coming from Martha herself. She’s getting angry.
She keeps glancing toward her sister Mary, who’s doing what? Absolutely nothing . . . and Martha can’t stand it.
I wonder how long she simmered before she exploded?
What in the world is Mary doing?, she thought. Hasn’t she noticed my slaving over the stove? Hey Mary, dinner’s not gonna cook itself! You think you might help a little??
Finally she’d had enough. Lord, will you please tell my lazy sister to help me serve?
You gotta love Martha’s spirit. She was doing what she knew best—serving, working, cleaning. And I’m sure Jesus appreciated it, but he decides to teach Martha a lesson I’m guessing she never forgot.
Slow down and enjoy your blessings. Some things are more important than having a clean house.
I can’t think of a more important lesson for many of us.
Your life is ridiculously hectic: bills to pay, diapers to change, carpool to manage, practice to attend, meals to cook, dishes to clean, quotas to meet, . . . It never ends, does it?
Life’s filled with all kinds of responsibilities, and it’s impossible to get them all done.
But please hear Jesus’ question: Have you sat at his feet lately? Have you spoken quietly with himabout your life’s joys and challenges? Have you read his word lately to feed your soul? You can only go so long at the pace you’ve set without nourishing the part of you that’s most important.
Are you “anxious and troubled about many things” today? Are you letting the “many things” squeeze out the “good portion”?
Commit yourself—or recommit yourself—to taking time to commune with Jesus.
It’s possible to be so busy doing the good that we neglect the best. —Chuck