SPIRIT OF MARTHA
Luke 10:38-42 KJV
38 Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village : and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word. 40 But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me.
Martha was the elder sister of Lazarus and Mary, a family Jesus is said to have loved dearly. It was Lazarus, the brother of Martha that Jesus would latter raise from the dead and Mary was the woman who anointed Jesus feet with oil and wiped them with her hair. It was a pious family but with the normal sibling rivalry as witnessed in every family. In the incident above Jesus as was his custom when around Bethany, visited Martha’s household and as expected of a guest the calibre of Jesus, Martha took it upon herself to throw a big feast for him. We are not told where Lazarus was but Mary the sister of Martha was there.
The bible said she together with Jesus entourage were seated at Jesus feet listening to his teaching. Martha felt left alone by her sister and went ahead to seek Jesus help to persuade Mary to assist. Jesus answer to Martha has something we can learn especially for those of us who
have been in the lord for long.
Luke 10:38-42 KJV
41 And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: 42 But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
Based on this story and others in the bible Martha seems to have known Jesus much longer than both Lazarus and Mary. She was more familiar with Jesus than Mary but Mary is said to have made a better Choice than Martha. While what Martha was doing was noble, what Mary had chosen was eternal. What do we learn from this incident in Martha’s house?
Service to God calls not only for working with our hands but also sitting at his feet to hear first-hand from him. It is time spend at his feet that fills us with grace and strength to serve him with our hands. Service to God is better than Service to Man. It is better to be spent at his feet than at his service. Communion with God is our first service to God. The longer you stay in Christ the greater the chances of our relationship with him been defined by activity and not communion. It is easy to be cumbered by the cares of this life until we lose our passion and relevance in the presence of God. It is good to find the ‘’one thing’’ needful in our relationship with God. I believe that thing is not service but our communion with God.
Balance in our relationship with God is critical, both Martha and Mary had some fault in the way they approached their relationship with Jesus. They both had extremes which called for Jesus intervention at some point. This Mary of Bethany had a passion for Jesus that carried through until Calvary. She was among the last at the Calvary tree and among the first to discover the resurrection of Jesus. Kingdom service is work but it is time at the feet of Christ that determines if the fruits will last.
Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
1 Corinthians 3:12-15
12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; (13) Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. (14) If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. (15) If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.