Martha v. Mary
Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”
And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42 NKJV)
Ugh. I don't know about you, but when I read this story, it makes me feel Jesus is unfair. Martha was doing her best to serve, while Mary got to be lazy and didn't care that her sister was working her tail end off trying to make a decent offering for the Lord. Martha's doing her best, right? Exactly what was she doing wrong?
Earlier in Luke 10 the Message Version says - All the same, the great triumph is not in your authority over evil, but in God's authority over you and presence with you. Not what you do for God, but what God does for you -- that's agenda for rejoicing.
If our concentration is on what we are doing for God rather than what He is doing for us, our focus becomes wrong. It can seem like we're doing great things, but we're missing out on the miracles God is doing in our lives, and can easily begin to boast about how great we are.
Saving is all His idea, and all his work. All we do is trust Him enough to let Him do it. It's God's gift from start to finish! We don't play a major role, if we did, we'd probably going around bragging that we'd done the whole thing! (Ephesians 2:8 Message)
Human nature is to take credit for things. We want what is due us, right?
Lately I've been neglecting my prayer and Bible study time, because I've been working on writing and editing my work. This is Christian fiction and devotionals we're talking about. All for His glory, right? Wrong.
And that's where Martha went wrong, too.
If I am too busy to sit down and listen to Jesus, because I want to present Him with the best meal/offering He's ever had, then I am wrong. It becomes about me instead of Him. And that's just what Martha did.
There is a time and a place for everything. I need to focus my life on developing my relationship with God, not on doing stuff for Him. That has its time and place, yes, but He wants me, not what I can do for Him. I need to remember that, and it's my prayer that we all remember it, too.