Martha really gets a bad wrap compared to her sister Mary that time when Jesus shows up at their house. I sympathize with Martha because I can imagine my wife doing the same thing – making sure all the things were ready to host. And I totally respect her for it. Someone’s got to get stuff ready, right?
This got me thinking about friendship, partnership and work. Notice that Jesus never says, “Martha, you shouldn’t do that.” He simply points out that time spent with him was more important. That doesn’t mean the other stuff wasn’t important at all. What if, sometimes, our working together with others is what is necessary and best? What if we simply can’t do certain things alone? I mean, could Mary have single-handedly hosted Jesus (and likely his disciples) without any help? Not well. She and Martha needed to work together.
Like many men, I like to try to do things myself whenever I can. But perhaps unlike some men, I’m not afraid to ask for help. In fact, I really enjoy spending time with friends learning from them or just catching up on life while we work. Or just having the simple satisfaction and confidence in knowing that with two minds on a project, it’s more likely it’ll get done right. I recently experienced that in a little project that required an amount of heavy lifting that would have been literally impossible without a friend. I was so thankful for him!
This week, don’t try to hide your need for friends and help. Relish it. Enjoy it. Learn from it. Just remember, as Jesus reminds Martha, not to forsake the most important stuff. And that starts with time with our Lord.
Grace and Peace,