All I want is to be is a loving Christian, a patient mother, an attentive girlfriend, a thoughtful daughter, a generous sister, a prepared employee, a worthy housekeeper, a nourishing/tasty cook, a kind friend, an energetic cheerleader, a strong supporter, and an informed catechist teacher. And let’s not forget that I want to do it all patiently and with a smile on my face.
I’ve cried a lot of tears trying to be good at all the things. I beat myself to death for losing patience, again, with my children. I feel guilty for running through McDonalds occasionally (ok weekly). It’s hard for me to be excited about evening events after working all day. I don’t want to fix dinner and clean up the mess when I have been running for 12 hours straight.
I love the Martha story. Jesus told her, “you worry and fret about so many things, and yet few are needed.” (Luke 10:41-42) Martha needed a dose of humility. Sometimes I need a dose of humility. I’m better at everything when I take the time to pray. I’m a better participant in life when I work in time for a daily mass. I’m happier when I reach out to other people. I’m more at peace, when I take time to really look into my children’s eyes while they are speaking to me. I feel more peace in my home when I daily pray my rosary. I can feel my soul being cleansed when I stick to a regular routine of confession.
Of course these things take more time away from time I don’t have, but the benefits of doing life while feeding your soul is worth so much. When my soul is fed, I take care of everything a lot better.
If Mary picked the better way by fixing her eyes on Jesus, why do I insist on “Martha-ing” things up? Why do I insist on putting myself in the pressure cooker of life, and in doing things on my own strength?
See, it may be that some of the things on my to-do list are born of my own pride, so maybe I need to adjust my priorities. He will be my strength and my peace. But it is for me to be like Mary and to let Him guide my soul into becoming more patient and loving. It is for me to give myself a break sometimes, by sitting at the feet of Jesus. While it might be necessary to do the work of Martha, our souls desperately need to be like Mary.
If we keep our focus on the world and all the expectations we quickly feel defeated. We quickly feel like we are not enough. And we quickly Martha things up. But if we let Jesus love us and allow ourselves time to love Jesus, we can easily see that we were made for so much more. We were made to love God. And just letting that soak in puts a huge grin on my face and makes my heart feel so full. What makes you feel more like Mary? What makes your heart feel so full?