The worship service was beautiful. The music was playing, voices were lifted up in praise all around me. My eyes were pinched closed and my hands lifted. The lyrics of the song were intermittently mingled with words of praise.
Then the unthinkable happened.
Right there in the midst of all that glorious worship, my mind was making a list of things I needed to do later that day. I'm sad to say, this was not my first experience with a wandering mind in church, but the real shocker was what happened next which was an absolute first.
I was praising the Lord, and all the sudden my mental list reached my lips and became mingled with my praise. I kid you not. It was horrifying.
It went something like this, "Thank you, Lord. I worship your name. Send that email." As the words exited my lips, I opened my eyes in dread hoping no one heard me. A real sense of shame flooded my heart. How could I allow this to happen?
The story of Martha asking Jesus to make her sister Mary get up and get busy came rushing into my mind. I could almost hear Jesus saying to me, "Mary has chosen that which is better."
In this very familiar Bible story from Luke 10, I've often thought that Martha get's a bad rap. If it's not for the Martha's in this world (the people like me) nothing would ever get done.
But at that very moment, I had to speak firmly to the dominate side of me. We'll call her Martha.
"Martha, be quiet already!"
At that moment, I was ashamed that the teeny-tiny Mary side of me had been pushed right out of the way.
It's not easy for a person like me who likes to check boxes and cross things off her list to sit at the feet of Jesus, but how can I argue with Jesus. "Mary has chosen that which is better."
Well here, read it for yourself. (Luke 10:38-41)
As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. 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!”
“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
Hum? So, how busy are you today? If you're anything like me, you may have to say these words on a daily basis, "Martha, be quiet already!"