Are you Mary or Martha?
In Luke 10, Jesus and his 72 followers are going from town to town. They came to a village in Bethany, just outside of Jerusalem. The village was home to two sisters, Mary and Martha, and their brother, Lazarus.
Starting to ring a bell?
She (Martha) had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
What Luke 10:39-32 doesn’t tell us is that Jesus was great friends with Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. I mean…Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (John 11:33). Before Jesus brought Lazarus back to life tears fled his eyes. So, ya…I think they were pretty tight. I found this little piece of information to be helpful since Luke doesn’t really let us know what’s up.
The Christmas season is among us and unfortunately to so many of us this means chaos, stress, and busyness. Reasons as to why this season arouses those feelings are a whole other blog post, but answers to how we can combat those feelings are uncovered right here in this post!
The reason for Christmas is JESUS. It is not Santa, presents, a white Christmas or any other symbolic image the WORLD has created to try and mask the true REASON FOR THE SEASON.
This being said, Are you Mary or Martha?
Martha was the hostess with the mostess. She realized royalty sitting in her home and wanted to make Jesus feel like the King he is. She worked and worked to make this possible. I don’t know if this truly makes a difference, but she was the oldest sister. Personally I think she felt like it was her personal duty to make everything just right and perfect.
Mary, on the other hand, had her hearing aids turned all the way up. She realized the royalty sitting her home and sat at Jesus’ feet and listened to him with awe and wonder. Mary wanted to give Jesus all her attention just like a King deserves. She didn’t try and multitask listening to Jesus and helping Martha. She just sat and listened.
Martha got fed up and said, “Jesus my little sister isn’t helping me do any work, please tell her to get up off her bum and help a sista out.” I know we’ve all had that one time that we were supposed to be doing chores and while you’re over there breaking your arm to clean the kitchen your sibling is just chilling on the couch watching their favorite TV show. You know what we did…. “MOMMMMMM MOMMMM MOMMMM…. so and so isn’t helping me clean!!!” Then your sibling gets in trouble and your revenge was sweet. Yeah, so that is kind of what I’m telling you here except Mary’s “favorite TV show” is Jesus so she gets a clear pass.
Jesus is like, look Martha what you’re doing is great and all, but Mary chose the better path. Verse 42 “… but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
Notice that Jesus did not say, “Wow Martha, way to waste your time making everything so nice for me.” No, he said what Mary did was better. Jesus’ words held much more value than a home cooked meal and a clean house.
So who are you? Are you Mary or Martha?
I know who I am…Martha for sure. Man, I love a good to do list. I love when everything is perfectly organized and prepared. But ya know what I’ve realized (and am still working on)? That these things are OK, but if cleaning my room, cleaning the kitchen, washing my clothes and doing my homework are on my to-do list before my Jesus date time then that is no bueno. Let me tell you, God is a jealous God so, when you try to put those tasks before HIS TIME, oh you are gonna know he is not happy ‘bout it. In addition, I promise if you give priority to the MAKER OF ALL THE EARTH then your to-do list will be done with much more JOY.
What’ll it be kids? Would you like to give the to-do list or Jesus power over your day?
Be Mary. Be Still. And Be with Jesus.