|Luke 10:38-42||Read Online|
The Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has made the right choice, and it will not be taken away from her.”
Several years ago, if you’d looked up “church lady” in the dictionary, you would’ve found my picture next to the definition. But I came by it honestly. Thank you very much.
It was an easy pattern to fall into. Growing up, the ladies in my small-town church were busy little bees for Jesus, serving every day of the week, running to and fro. And I wanted so badly to impress Jesus with all my skills too.
Before I knew it, as an adult, I was in three Beth Moore Bible Studies, leading two high school girls small groups, cooking 50 meals for the sick each week, playing greeter on Sunday mornings, and offering myself up to be a martyr in a remote village in Africa.
OK…maybe that’s a little bit of an exaggeration. But that’s what it felt like!
Then I crashed and burned. It was bad—real bad. I was exhausted. I quit everything. I decided to simply sit at Jesus’ feet, soaking Him in, just BEING in His presence. And that changed my heart and life—just like it did Mary’s from today’s story.
Can’t you picture Martha? She was distracted by her tasks—trying to make everything PERFECT for Jesus. Giving Mary the evil-eye from the doorway, she frantically tried motioning her back into the kitchen. Then frazzled, she finally approached Jesus.
“Lord, I need help. I’ve got eight casseroles in the oven, the table needs to be set, the glasses haven’t been filled, and the bread still needs to bake. My hands are full. Don’t you care that Mary’s not helping me? Tell her to get up off her behind and DO something!”
And what did classic, kind, gentle-hearted Jesus say? (Love this man so much.) “Martha, chill out. You’re getting all worked up over nothing when only one thing truly matters—ME. What Mary’s doing is right and good. Don’t take that away from her.”
First things first, here me say this: serving the Lord isn’t wrong. Let me repeat it: serving the Lord isn’t wrong. One more time for good measure: serving the Lord isn’t wrong.
Second, Jesus didn’t condemn Martha. He appreciated her warm hospitality and kindness. However, He was firm-but-gentle when He spoke, pointing out something that was good and something that was even better.
Martha wanted to give Jesus her TIME. Mary wanted to give Jesus her HEART.
Life is obviously busy for all of us—and the world tells us to live in that mode. But Jesus says, “Stop. Come to Me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). Sweet relief, right? Do it! You know you want to.
Serving Him is good. Sitting at His feet is way better.
- Who do you relate to—Mary or Martha?
- What things do you need to shed in life in order to stop and sit at Jesus’ feet?
- As you sit at His feet, listen. What’s He saying to you?