“Jesus continued from there toward Jerusalem and came to another village. Martha, a resident of that village, welcomed Jesus into her home. Her sister, Mary, went and sat at Jesus’ feet, listening to Him teach. Meanwhile Martha was anxious about all the hospitality arrangements.
Martha (interrupting Jesus): Lord, why don’t You care that my sister is leaving me to do all the work by myself? Tell her to get over here and help me.
Jesus: Oh Martha, Martha, you are so anxious and concerned about a million details, but really, only one thing matters. Mary has chosen that one thing, and I won’t take it away from her.”
~Luke 10:38-42 (VOICE)
Welcome to the shallow end; glad you could join me! I’m still here, dangling my toes off the steps, testing the waters with questions like…
How does a girl to go from hospitable to hostile in less than 60?
If I am in fact a Martha, didn’t You create me this way for a reason?
Although I still don’t have all the answers, I’ve confirmed I am without a doubt A Martha. And ironically, I’m pretty sure Martha Stewart is A Martha, too.
Perhaps you’re unsure as to your Martha-ness? Like a good “You Might Be A Redneck” joke, let’s use a few simple questions and find out. C’mon, this will be fun!
You Might Be A Martha If…
You over-commit and then force–ahem–recruit your family or friends to help?
You over-achieve and find yourself working during the wee hours?
You over-react and freak out on your family?
If you’re female and answered Yes to at least one of these questions, You Might Be A Martha!
You Might Be A Martha If You Over-commit.
Martha asked Jesus and His posse over for supper, y’all. How much bigger of an event could you host?
Over-committing is probably the easiest Martha-misstep because There Is Just So Much. All Of The Time. Married or single, mother or not; balancing our commitments is tricky. Even before becoming a mother of two, I struggled to keep my schedule from being overloaded.
Host a party at my house? Okay!
Add another class to my schedule? Sure!
Take on extra hours at work? Great!
With so many Good Things to do, Yes slides out before I really have time to determine how More will affect my Must. I can handle a lot, but even Nutella isn’t worth anything if it’s spread too thin.
You Might Be A Martha If You Overachieve.
This little number may be advertised a First-born, Type-A issue only, but I’m gonna go out on a limb and say most of us girls struggle with this.
Exhibit A: Pinterest.
Not only do I overbook myself, but I plan to bring my Pinterest Best to every single thing I commit to. Visions of sugarplums dance in my head and fill my Boards.
I can make that! And maybe a couple of those! Oh and that’s cute, too!
Unfortunately, my overachieving ways usually leave me with two parting gifts: An over-extended budget and an under-accomplished list.
Exhibit B: Pinterest Fail.
You Might Be A Martha If You Over-react.
Hello, my name is Jessie and I am The Drama Queen Who Never Sits.
I’m always Up. Doing. Fixing. Planning. Everyone needs to be hugged and welcomed and cared for. No one goes unnoticed or hungry–not on my watch!
I overwork myself and then, like Martha, I get in a tizzy. I believe the lie that I’m The Only One Who Cares and I’m Doing Everything, forgetting I volunteered for all of it.
I get all worked up and before you know it, I’m interrupting Jesus, questioning His level of concern and telling Him what to do.
(This is the scene where the party music screeches to a halt.)
Martha was a spaz. Mary was calm. How’d she do that, Lord?
As I discussed the things I’m learning with my husband, he asked a legit question: Do you feel you worship as much as you work?
(That Stevie-P is one smart cookie.)
I know work is a form of worship but like any good Drama Queen, I operate in extremes. I’m guessing Martha probably did, too. The challenge is finding the balance between work and worship; knowing when to love with action and when to be still and let God be God.
But Lord, how do I “Be Still” when there’s SO much to do?
They say the devil is in the details and for Martha and me–yes, he is. I call it “attention to details”; Jesus called it “anxious and concerned” over things that don’t really matter.
Hospitality is a spiritual gift FROM THE LORD. God gave me both the desire and ability to serve in this capacity, but I don’t have to do All The Things.
Wanting to host parties and tend to details is not wrong. It’s when my worship becomes busy-work that I need to slow my roll.
I believe that is exactly what Jesus wanted Martha to do.
Be still and sit with Me.
Don’t worry about your List.
Don’t think about what’s Next.
Just sit. Listen. Worship.
That’s what Mary did and Jesus said she found what is Good.
Jessie, it’s okay to be A Martha as long as you have the heart of A Mary.
Thank you, Lord!
Now, to find A Mary heart…
If you’re still debating your Martha-standing, watch this video. If you can relate, You Might Be A Martha.😉