As homemakers, sometimes, we can find our identity in conflict. The enemy can assail us with Proverbs 31 and Titus 2 and we get stuck between the desire to live according to Titus 2 ..."be busy at home", and Luke 10:38 "... only a few things are needed and indeed only one, Mary has chosen it and it will not be taken away from her." So, in as much as I understand Martha, and as much as I agree with Paul saying "be busy at home", my greatest desire, is to hear Jesus affirm me like He did Mary. In my heart I am Mary... I love to sit at His feet, be with Him, listen to Him, realize who He is, realize that He loves me very much (more than I can really comprehend), realize that He loves all people, realize that He enjoys my company, realize that He even sticks up for me when someone speaks unjustly of me. He is awesome.
So I shake it off. I shake off the "push, push, push" to do so many things with the wrong motivation. I stop. I find rest and peace with Jesus. A real relationship of love and friendship with my own precious Savior. What is it that He is saying to me? What is the next step He wants me to take? Clear all those other things away and listen. Listen to Him. Let His love well up inside, let it overflow. Move in His Spirit and none other. His answer is always love. To love and be loved by Him, first, and then to love others... everything else flows from that. He said it Himself didn't He? The greatest commandments are summed up in two. Love the Father, Love others. If we don't have that... it is all meaningless. Perhaps Martha's motivation in this instance wasn't love, perhaps it was duty, pride, a need to be important, a need to be affirmed by people's praise, I'm sure there may even have been jealousy at work; perhaps she could see Mary enjoying the Lord's presence, and here she was doing all this work and getting no credit for it; then came self pity because she couldn't get anyone to pay attention to her sacrifice and she is overwhelmed.
Families must be fed, dishes and laundry must be washed. I don't believe that Jesus meant that we were to refrain from taking care of our families, or doing tasks, of creating cozy homes and "doing" all that must be done. But when I choose those things over being in His presence, and I find that I am doing those things in a spirit other than His, when I find that my work is not motivated by love, then I need to stop; pull the plug, regroup, have a Mary Moment with Him.
Today after I started feeling that "overwhelmed" feeling with a dozen things I needed to do, and a dozen things I wanted to do, and an imagination bursting with ideas of a dozen thing I could possibly do later, I decided to stop, put the tea kettle on and get quiet with Him. Oh such peace. I felt order restore. I felt peace take over. I have had a hard time all week getting things done. I think because I hadn't been well, and was a little slow to get my energy back. But I have felt restful and peaceful in it until today; today I felt strong, so I was going to catch up and then some. I think the Lord is teaching me to go about things differently. What in the world is all the rush for any way? Am I in a race with someone? I don't need to affirm myself with good works, I want to affirm myself by loving Him. All the rest will work itself out, because "....only a few things are necessary, and really only one..."
Afterwards, I put together a couple of lists; A " To Do" List, and a "Get to do List". I can tackle them in a Spirit of peace; one by one or two by two... however He gives me the strength, the delight, the instruction or the provision to do it. I can brain storm, write down ideas, and tuck them away for the right time, and I can carry on. No need to wrestle, no need to struggle, He will take me where I need to go if I just stop to take a hold of His hand. He gave me gifts. I get to use them. He gave me blessings, I get to enjoy them; Even in my work,
I can take pleasure;
but I don't want any of it without Him. I want to be like Mary.
38 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. 39 She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 40 But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”
41 “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, 42 but few things are needed—or indeed only one.[a] Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”