Monday, July 22, 2013

7-in-7, Day 1: Anxiety

So, I am taking on the 7-blogs-in-7-days challenge from Jen over at Conversion Diary. Although it was thanks to Casey at My Love Is Too Little that I decided to tackle this. So, thanks, Casey! (I think. . .)

It is a good challenge, as I have (obviously) not been posting much, at all! So - deep breath - time to flex those writing muscles and dive in!

Yesterday was "Martha Sunday". I kind of dread it every year: the day the gospel reading turns to Luke 10:38-42 - the Martha and Mary story.
We all know it: Jesus visits Martha and Mary. Martha works, Mary listens. Martha=bad, Mary=good. Or so it always seems to go.

I have written about Martha before.

And Mary.

Yesterday I heard three different homilies on these women. Three different perspectives. At least this year each homily pointed out that Martha is not "bad". 

I heard it in a new way this year (and I am pretty sure I know the reason why!). There was one verse that practically leaped out and danced around me, waving its arms and chanting, "hear this".

"Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things."

We all have different gifts. Martha's was pretty clearly running the household. We never really know what Mary's gifts are, but we know one thing: Mary learned the art of not being anxious or worried.

Jesus did not get on to Martha for her work, but for her attitude in her work. She served, but it was with a burdened heart.  Did Martha enjoy Jesus being there at all? Not, did she like him visiting, but did she have moments of getting to enjoy his visit. Did she sit and listen at all, or was she constantly working, increasingly mad at doing it all herself?

We never hear the whole story. Did Mary help at all? Or was this just a moment when Mary had decided to sit and listen to words of wisdom from the Master, and Martha happened to notice it just when she was feeling most overwhelmed?
I love this about the Bible - there is such a lack of nitty-gritty details, so we get to kind of set the scene, over and over and over. Imagining it in different ways.

Right now, I am about out of my mind with anxiety and worry. My schedule is over-run. I cannot figure out how to fit things together. I am still not caught up on paperwork for the last homeschool year. One child still has not finished his science. I am low on money and need to order books for the next year. I am starting a new part-time job and I am scared to death of how it will affect me and my family, not to mention fear of failure. My constant stress over not losing weight and still gaining it slowly, in spite of eating pretty well and exercising. Running a house without a lot of help, with occupants that will only work when ordered to (multiple times). Life in general.

"You are anxious and worried about many things."

I hear you, Jesus!

This week, I will try to seek the better portion, even in the midst of the craziness.

1 comment:

Casey said...

YAY! Way to go in joining the blog challenge. Woot woot!

What a great reflection on the Mary/Martha story. I have to admit, it's always seemed the same to me, that Martha is doing it wrong because she's up and working and not sitting at Jesus' feet. It makes sense, though, and is kind of a relief to think Jesus may have been specifically calling her out on the anxiety and worry. I can totally relate to that, because I know for a FACT that my spiritual life and my relationship with God suffer when I am focused on anxiety and worry (whether I'm "working" or not).

I read something like this a while back, I don't remember where: God always outdoes us in generosity. When you make a point to set aside a little time every day to devote just to Him, He will give you a bunch more time in return. I've heard people say that when they devote time first thing every morning to prayer, they are amazed at how much time they still have the rest of the day to get everything in their busy schedule finished. When they neglect to pray, the busy schedule overwhelms them and they just don't get everything done.