Wednesday, September 6, 2017

How To Be The Martha HE Created You To Be ~ It ALWAYS Goes Back To The Heart


I've read the account of Mary and Martha from Luke 10 a million times and heard just as many sermons on this same account.

But I still can't get the Martha mentality out of my head.

Maybe because I have littles who are always asking about the next meal.
(Can I get an AMEN?!)
And if I don't make it they most likely aren't going to get it.
(At least not the good stuff!)
So I huff and I puff away in the kitchen...3 meals a day...for nearly 365 days a year.
(Because going out to eat with a family of 7...have you seen how my boys tend to act in public?!)
Ain't nobody got time to just sit around!

In this story I see a woman who knows that her LORD is outside and 100% sure that he is hungry.
She is torn.
She desperately wants to go out and sit at his feet, like her sister, and soak in all that He has to say, but knows full-well that dinner is NOT going to cook itself.

And if it doesn't get done now they aren't going to be able to eat until midnight!
(There aren't any prepared snacks or fast food restaurants right around the corner back then)
And she wants the BEST for her Savior.

So I get it!

God has made her a get-it-done kind of girl.
Who is very aware of her surroundings.

We are people who plan ahead.
We think about the full picture.
The clock is our best friend and worst enemy.

There are two things going on in this story that I think about every time I read/ hear it.

1 - I believe women (and men) like us will spend the rest of our lives fighting the get-it-done mentality when we need to work on the discipline of "being still" with the LORD (and yes, it is a discipline).  There is a time and a place for that FOR SURE (preferably every day!).

But today I want to hone in on number 2, which is:

I wonder, at the risk of taking another vantage point, if Jesus would have reprimanded Martha if she were to have been serving with a servant's heart.  Maybe it wasn't just about her stopping what she was doing to come and join them.  Maybe it was about the HEART behind her service.

If she would have been serving out of a heart of love and service like Christ commands us to serve so many times in the new testament, would she have been RIGHT WHERE SHE NEEDED TO BE?

Martha was said to be "distracted by all the preparations".  You can just see the bitterness and resentfulness flowing out of the words when she went out to Jesus and said, "Lord, don't you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself?  Tell her to help me!"

Martha wasn't serving with the right heart.  And of course the Lord could sense that.  Actually, He didn't even have to SENSE it.  She was pretty open about it.

BUT...

...what if Martha would have been in the kitchen doing the thing that God had created inside of her to do.  She was a get-it-done kind of girl because that is the way God wired her (and me).  What if she would have been serving with a servant's heart.  I believe that if her heart would have been softened to serve out of love for her guest/Savior, and even her sister (that had chosen not to help her this time), that her heart would have been in the right place.

In this story Martha's mind was completely consumed with anger and resentment toward her sister.  I can only imagine the ugly things that were whirling around in her head about her "lazy" sister that "always made HER do all the work" as she prepared this meal.  Her mind was so full of thoughts of entitlement for herself and bitterness toward her sister. (It's a good thing these are all hypothetical thoughts, ahem...)

If only she would have been in the kitchen with an open heart and mind to serve like Jesus.  She would have then been in a posture to "work as unto the LORD" (Colossians 3:23) while allowing her heart and mind to be less consumed with the negativity toward her sister. Can you imagine the freedom she would have opened up in her heart and mind to hear, at a distance of course, the wise words of her savior just around the corner.  The wisdom.  The teachings.  The laughter.  The closeness.

Here is what the LORD is teaching me about the Martha he has created inside of me.

The only way I will be able to serve the way Jesus has exemplified for us to serve is by digging in against my natural flesh to do, do, do, but to find a way to be still with Him every day.  And it is then, and only then, that I can serve out of true love, the way a true servant should.  And IN that kind of serving I will be able to hear and feel the closeness of our Father right in the middle of all the serving.

It all goes back to the HEART.
It ALWAYS goes back to the heart.
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