Martha or Messiah?

There are words written in pastel chalk on the cement leading to my front door. Drawn at the brink of our family celebration, the words became a welcome mat acknowledging my son’s high school graduation, my parent’s 60th anniversary.

“Congratulations!” “Welcome to California!”

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 Chalk words that gladdened hearts now fade in the summer sun. The family members we welcomed have gone.

I mop the kitchen floor, erasing dusty footprints and sticky crumbs where people gathered to eat and laugh. Now the only reminders of my guests are photographs nailed to the refrigerator with magnets. Moments captured. Smiling faces preserved on matted paper.

Has it only been a week since I felt my eldest son’s strong embrace, smelled the fresh scent of my daughter’s hair, listened to the voices of my parents who have loved me well?

While they were here, I cooked, served, and smiled. I rose before dawn like the woman in Proverbs and saw to the needs of my household. Adrenaline, and love for them, kept me going till the midnight hour.

The family called me Martha (woman mentioned in the Gospels). They urged me to sit still and rest. But I’m wired to be a Martha…catering to other people’s needs.

Did you sleep well? Are you hungry? Can I get you something to drink?

Are you hot or cold? Need a pillow for your head?

How can I encourage you, pray for you? Make you feel loved?

I don’t mind being a Martha, but in assuming to meet their every need, do I act like their Messiah?

·  Do I urge them to rely on Jesus, or depend on me when there’s a problem and decision to be made?

· Do I mislead when I share what I think is best, or encourage them to consult and obey God’s Word?

“But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19)

Some days, I balk at being Martha when I think of what Jesus said, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things…” (Luke 10:41)

Then I read His Word, “Jesus loved Martha….” (John 11:5) And I’m reminded He loves me too even when I’m worried and distracted by many things.

I know Jesus loves me because even in this….aftermath of celebration…He’s teaching me that a Martha can best serve her family’s needs by letting go, and leading them to Jesus.

Unlike the chalk words on my cement, HIS Word never fades away.

  

Author: Karen Foster

I'd like to say I've changed, but after decades of living, I still have the same four passions. My relationship with Jesus, spending time with family, attending live theater, and writing devotions & first-person stories about a loving, faithful God who reveals Himself in our every day circumstances.

6 thoughts on “Martha or Messiah?”

  1. Thanks, Karen…good reminder. I loved this…I’ll be praying for you as you go to your conference soon, and then when you get back, I’d love to get together and hear all about it. God bless you as you continue to write for Him and bless others through your obedience.

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  2. Wow! This is exactly where I’m at today. Here we are on vacation at the Outer Banks in a beautiful beach house…all the kids/grandkids…and I am loving it and feeling overwhelmed at God’s goodness. But I am that same Martha you mentioned…cooking, cleaning, serving, anticipating needs of others. Thanks for the reminder that this time with my family needs to be about pointing our hearts to Jesus!

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    1. Knowing you, I have no doubt you do point others to Jesus. That’s what makes you such a great mother while you’re meeting everyone’s needs. Hope your time together blessed you as much as them.

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