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Are you More Like Martha or Mary?

by stephanie reck  
5/18/2016 / Christian Living

As you may recall the story of two women in the Bible Martha and Mary. Who does not identify with hard-working Martha? The two women had contrasting approaches to their walk with God. Martha was anxious and not as trusting, but Mary was still and preferred to be with Jesus instead of doing anything else.

Jesus was visiting their home and Martha was the one who complained to Jesus that Mary was not helping prepare the meal. Jesus' reply to Martha was, "Martha, Martha, 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 from her" Luke 10:38-42. Martha became distracted with all the preparations that came with having company. Martha appears to be running around trying to figure out how all the people in her house will be fed. Her busyness had distracted her from being with Jesus.

Sometimes we forget how big our God is and that He is the one who fed the 4,000 (Matthew 15:32-39), and the 5,000 (Matthew 14:14-21). If God could do this He could certainly feed whoever was in Martha and Mary's house.

In John 11:17-40, this is a story of Jesus raising Lazarus (Martha and Mary's brother) from the dead, and the two sisters having different reactions to the news that Jesus was coming to their house. In verse 20, we see the difference between Martha and Mary as they heard Jesus was coming. Mary sat still in her house and waited for Jesus, but Martha went off to find Jesus. Mary went to see Jesus when He called her. She waited on His timing and prepared herself as she waited.

Mary and Martha were both believers in Jesus, but their walk with him was not the same. Martha was busy, impatient, and distracted by doing, and Mary was continually found waiting patiently at Jesus' feet.
Are we at times too busy to sit at Jesus' feet and wait for Him? Do we sometimes take matters into our own hands because we are impatient?

At times we can be like Martha and at times like Mary. We can be inclined to let our busy lives of service distract us from spending time with God. Jesus gently admonished Martha for being worried and upset not for serving. Service is a good thing, but sitting at Jesus's feet is best. When we give Jesus the attention He deserves, He can empower us to serve others. If we are trying to serve others without sitting at Jesus' feet worshiping Him and listening to Him we most likely will be operating in our flesh.

Christ and His Word should be the first priority in our lives. Everything will flow from this time with the Lord. If we are not spending time with the Lord we will surely be impatient, worried, and anxious like Martha.
The most important thing we can do every day is be with the Father. That may mean you have to get up before the kids or your spouse, or it may mean leaving the chores until your time with the Lord. You will have a more productive, peaceful day when you put Jesus first. If you are too busy to fit Jesus in daily, you are too busy!

In what ways are you more like Martha or Mary? Which sister would you like to be more like and why?

Stephanie R. Reck, LMSW, LBT, BCCC
Founder of Hope Ministry
[email protected]
Hope Ministry, @2020
Author of, "Disciplining Your Mind 30 Days to a Better You!"

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