Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Serve City, Here I Come...

But Martha was distracted with much serving... Luke 10:40

So, how does one serve without becoming distracted? I have often felt for Martha in her dilemma. Someone had to do the work and since Mary wasn't doing it, at least not at that moment, the job was left to her. What was the "better part" that Jesus spoke of? And what about the serving? Was the problem really that Martha was serving? I doubt it. Was it because she complained, or that she failed to make time to sit at Jesus' feet that she was reprimanded? I suspect it was actually some of each and that deep inside Martha really enjoyed serving but had let the job become more important than her Saviour. Possibly she was so stressed out because she had not taken the time needed to sit at Jesus' feet and destress. And what about me, another Martha? Am I taking the time to sit at Jesus feet each day, or just stressing and becoming overwhelmed with the tasks calling for my attention? How do I fix the problem? Maybe part of the solution is prior preparation; planning ahead so the serving part isn't so stressful and there remains time to sit and enjoy the company of others. This is something I have been wrestling with for years. I'll let you know if I ever get a handle on it... Don't hold your breath, just pray.


  1. I know what you mean about serving and stressing.

    When I was younger and could do it we had dozens and dozens of missionaries in our home for meals, overnights, weekends, and I can remember having one gentleman there for six weeks. As much as
    we enjoyed him being there and truly loved him it was a relief to be back with just our little family again.

    It is a difficult balance between being both Mary and Martha.

  2. I wrestle with this too even though my name is not Martha. :)

  3. I always pictured myself in Martha, so busy taking care of the guest - and making sure everything was "perfect" ( the meal, clean house, etc. ) that the guest got neglected. Jesus was a great man to her and she wanted to do the best for him. It was a lesson to her that her best was to show him the respect of listening and realizing he didn't care about all the little details. That is just my personal take on the situation having been a previous perfectionist. Maybe I am not thinking deep enough about it. It is easy to work so hard when someone visits that we actually neglect them though.

  4. Ah yes, how to reach that balance? I think you touched on it with the need for prior preparation, but of course easier said than done. And there are always some things that simply can not be done ahead.

  5. "the respect of listening"

    Yes, Ann, I think that is often what we tend to neglect. I know I'm often too distracted by what comes next to listen carefully.

    Joy, thank you for all your kind words of encouragement.

    Christine, I need one of those signs that says "Martha Does Live here..."

    Joeks, I'm not truly sure what the answer is but I know He does. Stuff happens, life goes on, and it all seems easier said than done. Maybe the question is "Does it really need to be done?"