My son asked me earlier this week, “Why is your username ‘maryormartha’?” I didn’t want to explain why I chose that username. It’s not that he wouldn’t have understood, and it’s not that I’m not open with him. He is very sharp, and we have a very close relationship. I do not hide my faults from him, my past mistakes. He is comfortable with being himself in front of me. He is my little buddy. I just didn’t want to take the time to sit down with the conflict that is me.
It is by observing my children that I can see what has been “caught” in our home. And there are many wonderful things that they have learned at our feet. And a few bad ones, but I never fooled myself into thinking I was a perfect parent. My children love my husband and me, in spite all of our many imperfections.
While I try to be accommodating when my children ask service of me, I am not always ready to make myself available. I may be too tired or just comfortable where I’m at. I may be gripey or hungry or hot or I may just be having a moment of selfishness when I say, “I just want to be left alone.” And they acquiesce, sadly. They retreat and leave me be.
And I am glad in a guilty sort of way–glad to be unhandled.
I desire to serve the Lord, and I enjoy doing this by serving others. But there are those times when I get caught up in “the work” that needs to be done. Sometimes it doesn’t take much to convince myself that spending time in the kitchen is more important than spending time at Jesus’ feet. Sometimes I get frustrated that no one else is working beside me. Sometimes God sends a little child to drive home His love for me.
Earlier today, I sat down in our chair in the living room to relax. I had a fresh bowl of beans, and I was ready to eat. The spoon was almost to my mouth when I heard Sweet Gigi (5) holler, “Wait, Mom!”
Ugh! Good grief! What does she want now?
And then here she came, bringing me a pillow from our bed. She asked me to lean forward, so she could make me more comfortable. But she didn’t stop there.
She also brought me a footstool, so that I could rest my feet.
Then a pillow for my footrest.
When that was accomplished, she asked me if I wanted my drink. With my drink tucked in beside me, with a soft pillow behind my head and under my propped up feet, I was able to start my lunch.
Then came the icing on the cake—a foot rub. My sweet little 5 year old Gigi bent down at my feet and rubbed my old crusty dogs until her hands were tired.
I drew her close and looked her in the eyes and told her, “Thank you” and lots of other wonderful words for her eager ears.
She knew that she was loved, but I also wanted her to know that she was appreciated.
Thank you, Jesus, for my sweet child. Thank you for giving her a servant’s heart. She was delighted to serve me—her face glowing with satisfaction at taking care of her Mommy. She was not concerned with the work that needed to be done, with the mess that she had made, nor with the mess that I had made. She just wanted to take care of me, to spend time at my feet. Sweet Gigi. Sweet Mary.
Do you have a similar “Mary or Martha” moment in your life? Here’s one from Weak and Loved that you might also enjoy reading. Not only do I enjoy your comments, but my readers love your comments, too. Sometimes we are the teacher. Sometimes we are the student.