Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Mary Heart in a Martha World

Do you ever feel like you just aren't cutting it?

I watch these other moms who seem to have it all together. I've had my fair share of chats with other stay at home mothers to know that they don't have it together. 
But I am constantly feeling "behind". 
I can't seem to keep my kitchen floors clean. There is always laundry in the dryer waiting to be folded (and then sitting in the basket for another couple of days waiting to be put away). 
There are always toys on the floor, socks in the bathroom, junk mail on the counters, and dishes in the sink. Always a kid calling my name. 
My to do list is only getting longer.

(In our playroom)

I find that the stress of a messy home and having a long "to do" list is causing me neglect what is really important; (it's not my children…totally) it's my time with Jesus. When I sit down after a day of chores, I don't want to use my brain or my heart. I want to sit on the couch and watch some mindless, trashy show on Netflix. I know that spending time with Jesus takes a lot of time and effort, just like any relationship. It takes the effort of opening my Bible and listening to what God has to tell me. It requires a quite space and an attitude of desire. 

But I'm tired. I don't want to exert any more energy, anywhere.

I can't stop thinking about Martha in Luke 10: 38-42 (NLV).
"As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.”
But the Lord said to her, 'My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.' ” 
I love this translation (NLV), because it says "you are worried and upset over all these details".  I am Martha, not Mary. In fact when I read this passage I find myself thinking "But Jesus, she was cooking you dinner! Things have to get done! That was her way of showing you love." I can defend Martha. I know her motives, because they are mine too. I want to serve, I want to make sure my home looks nice and I want to make sure my food is tasty. I want to be sure that my kids look clean and put together in public and that I don't look like I feel (a hot mess). 
Can you just see Mary sitting there soaking up Jesus, listening to his wisdom. She had it figured out. She probably knew this was the only chance she was going to have with her Savior. She was desiring the relationship. She wasn't bent on trying to impress Jesus like Martha was, like I am. And Jesus called her out. He told her her priorities were wrong. I've always wondered if after he said that to her if she left the meal to burn on the stove and sat with them. 
That is what I'm working on now. I am working on leaving my worries behind. During quite time I'm trying to leave the lunch dishes sit in the sink and do my Bible Study (Beth Moore's James). I don't want to be called out by Jesus as having my priorities off (even though I'm pretty sure that's exactly what he's doing right now). 
I'm pretty sure we can all agree that is it so hard to have Mary's heart in Martha's world!


Ashley O'Brien said...

Bethany, thank you for sharing! I have a six week old and I feel the same way and I especially feel that since I only have one baby and he is so easy to care for there should be no excuse why my home isn't perfect and for me to look perfectly put together and my son, too. But there is an excuse...the time I spend fussing over fingerprints on mirrors I should be with my Jesus and working on my relationship with Him and not on how I look or my home looks on the outside. Thank you for this post!

Shannon said...

I hear ya!! I have 3 under 5 and also an Etsy shop like you!!! I am BUSY and I am a SAHM also and even though I am here all day and one goes to kindergarten 1/2 the day, I get nothing done! LOL Stop by and say hello if you get a chance :)


Kristy said...

Great to hear we all think others have it all together, but this is never true that's why it's so wonderful to have MOPS and to be authentic and genuine. Thanks for speaking from the heart!