I’ve been thinking a lot about Lori’s post, The Care and Feeding of Sunshine. In this post, Lori discusses happiness and whether or not we should expect to be happy 24/7.

I’ve also been thinking about Mary and Martha – the topic a friend is preaching about today. Normally when you hear the story of Mary and Martha you think about Mary sitting at Jesus feet while Martha does all the chores, working herself into a lather simultaneously. Christ chastises Martha.

I’ve always disliked this passage. Why? Because I want to be Mary – comfortable soaking up the presence of God while some poor wench does all the stinking work. But I’m not. I’m Martha all the way – not only do I end up doing the work but I often end up resenting it.

And this is what I’ve come to wonder about. Was Martha’s only fault that she was working vs listening? Or was she also to blame for making herself into a victim? Read the passage. Nothing is said about her being told to do all the work. These men would eat loaves and fishes that had been laying around in a basket all day. (Need I say yuck?) Something tells me that olives and figs would have been acceptable and a whole lot less work. But it isn’t the path that Martha chose. And it doesn’t say anything about her asking Mary for help either, so picture her heaving great sighs and baying around in the kitchen trying to get someone to feel sorry for her. A professional martyr.

I have to wonder if this is part of what Christ was getting on Martha about. Mary was not responsible for Martha’s happiness or lack thereof.

Don’t be like Martha. Happiness may not be available 24/7 but that isn’t an excuse to go out of the way to make yourself unhappy. If you revisit old slights and hold them fast, your hands will be too full of grudges to raise in Praise.

–SueBE

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