My brother used to teasingly call me “Martha Stewart” when we were younger. I wish I could say it was because I am a wonderful cook, a brilliant hostess, keep a perfectly clean and organized home, and an artistically gifted decorator, but that wasn’t it. Actually it was because I can be a bit of a perfectionist, a “jack of all trades, master of none” and a Martha Stewart Wannabe in all things domestic.
Not long ago, as I was busy with all I needed to get done for the day, feeling quite proud of myself for how productive I had been and all that I was getting done, you know…doing my “Martha” routine…I walked into my teenage son’s room to clean it up and got in a huff. “Look at this mess!” I thought to myself. It wasn’t really that bad, his bed was made, but wrinkly, there were books and things on his bed, it was just “cluttered.” I thought to myself, “If you are going to make your bed, at least do it right, and why lay stuff on top of it after it is made?” (See, I told you I can be a bit picky!)
So, as I began to vacuum all the little “paper pieces” that fly out when you rip paper out of a spiral notebook, (a mom definitely did not invent spiral notebooks!) I closed his bedroom door so I could vacuum behind it and noticed a post-it note on the back of the door. It read “Do your quiet time” and it was in my son’s handwriting.
Suddenly, the story of Mary and Martha in The Bible came flooding into my heart and mind. Here’s how it reads in The Message:
“As they continued their travel, Jesus entered a village. A woman by the name of Martha welcomed him and made him feel quite at home. She had a sister, Mary, who sat before the Master, hanging on every word he said. But Martha was pulled away by all she had to do in the kitchen. Later, she stepped in, interrupting them. “Master, don’t you care that my sister has abandoned the kitchen to me? Tell her to lend me a hand.” The Master said, “Martha, dear Martha, you’re fussing far too much and getting yourself worked up over nothing. One thing only is essential, and Mary has chosen it—it’s the main course, and won’t be taken from her.” Luke 10:38-42
After reading his reminder on his door, I took a closer look at the “mess” on his bed. I then saw it was his Bible and daily devotional he got from Kanakuk, which quickly made me realize that in my hurry to get things “done” that day, I had not taken time out to read The Word or pray….but my son had, even if it meant he had to quickly make his bed before school. Martha indeed! No Martha Stewart here…but another kind of Martha for sure. He made time for the most important thing, while I was all worked up and missing out on time sitting at the feet of Jesus.
Don’t you love it when God uses your kids to speak to you and gently rebuke you when you are wrong?! I do! My hope is that I can change my legacy – not to be a “Martha Stewart Wannabe” and not to be “Martha” at all. I hope my legacy is that I was most like Mary.