I was very challenged by this chapter on Martha and Mary. The undeniable fact is—I am a Martha. I have heard people say this so many times as an excuse for why they are not good at ministering to people’s hearts and why they are lacking in passion for the Lord and I do not say this to offer such an excuse. I mean it only in that I find it very easy to serve people and be hospitable to them…so much so that I forget the good part…worshiping at the feet of my Savior and really having a passion in my service and caring deeply for others souls. I was both encouraged and convicted by this chapter. I was encouraged because John took the opportunity to highly esteem Martha’s heart for service. It is a good thing to be hospitable…it is a gift that the Lord has given to some. Her desire to serve the Lord and her guests was completely pure and wonderful…at first. But she allowed her service to become self-focused rather than others focused. Her desire should have been to serve others so that they could fully enjoy and take in the presence of their Lord. She should have delighted in being able to serve others in this way. But another thing that she should have done is left everything that could be left till later so that she could also enjoy the fellowship with Christ! The dishes can wait, but what a unique opportunity to sit at the feet of Jesus! That is where I struggle most. I confess I do sometimes struggle with having bitterness when I serve…like Martha did with Mary. (She even accused the Lord of not caring that Mary wasn’t helping her! Martha Peace pointed out in our conference on Saturday that she was actually trying to manipulate the Lord!) But even more than that I struggle in delighting to do dishes rather than delighting in having sweet fellowship with the body of Christ. My gracious husband reminded me of this just the other day when we had our Bible Study over for dinner and I started to clean up while they were still there. I was joyful in my cleaning and my heart to do it was pure, but I was missing out on something so much better. He said to me, “The dishes can wait till later. Come join everyone out here!” Oh how my heart misses out on so much because of my tendency to be task focused rather than others focused. This is something that the Lord has been teaching me for several months now and I have been sharing with the girls from my Bible Study. It is something Kyle is very good at and I want to learn from him! I want to continue to be hospitable, but for the purpose of being focused on others and knowing when being focused on them actually means letting things get messy and instead ministering to their hearts!
2 years ago