Worship At the Feet of Jesus and Sitting Among Friends #63

At the feet of Jesus. What a glorious place to be. So often I hear people say their desire is to be at the feet of Jesus. Time eventually slips away from them and busy lives consume them.

If that is you, don’t stop reading! You are in the right place. Don’t let guilt or shame push you away. Jesus doesn’t want that for you. He wants you! In fact, He wants all of you!

You may be thinking you have been spread so thin already, how could you possibly give more or give God you're all?

Be Encouraged! Today we will look at a woman who gave Jesus exactly what was due Him. Her worship at His feet and found this to be the better portion.

You may have heard this story 1000 times. That’s okay. I hope this brings encouragement to your day and perspective to your time.

Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching.

But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42 (ESV)

Before we get too hard on Martha, I want to point out she was doing great things. She welcomed people into her home. She prepared a meal for her guests. She, too, loved Jesus and knew Him as her Messiah John 11:27.

Do you ever feel like you are doing all the right things, just as Martha was doing, but not gaining any ground in your walk with Christ?

Christ is clear here.  He is our good portion. He is our one necessary thing in this life.  At His feet. Still. Listening. Learning. Living.  That is the one thing that can never be taken away from us.
You are serving endlessly. Giving your time, heart, and energy but left feeling completely empty.

Do you see those Mary’s around you who seem to be gaining all there is in the area of Christ’s concern and you are left feeling frustrated? Their worship and joy seem to come so easily and you feel like you are just hanging on.

You may see Mary as lazy. You, too, may want to be shouting, “Get up and do something.” While I believe, there is absolutely a time and place for this, it is never at the cost of missing out on time at the feet of Jesus.

Martha was getting mad at what appeared to her as a terrible injustice. She may have loved to be sitting at the feet of Jesus, but then how would any of the work ever get done? 

I would love to point out that Jesus is gentle with Martha. He acknowledges her feelings. Please hear that clearly. I believe one reason we hesitate to come to Christ or back to the place He wants us to be is for fear of the rejection, rebuke, disappointment, guilt, shame, and the list can go on.

Trust me, I lived that way for a long time and it is simply not true. We see Christ being gentle with Martha. He knows she is trying to do the right thing. The good things. Being full of truth and grace, He tells her, however, she is missing the point. She is missing Him.

We may feel like the things we are doing in this life and in this world are the good and right things to be doing. But Christ is clear here.

He is our good portion. He is our one necessary thing in this life.

At His feet. Still. Listening. Learning. Living.

That is the one thing that can never be taken away from us.

Ask yourself this quick question. Are you a Martha, always doing or are you a Mary?

If you are a Martha - You feel like you are in the rat race of life and never really have time to sit (I know that is a scary word for some of you) at the feet of Jesus. I want to recommend two quick things.
  1.  Don’t be afraid to give yourself permission to stop at sit. If you are someone that has a checklist, put it away until after you have spent some time with Jesus. Jesus tells us that He is our reward and He is the better portion and I know you want that good portion of your day.
  2. Celebrate your time with Jesus at every little step. Maybe it was 5 minutes in the morning with no distractions, while you lifted up your heart to Him. Celebrate the opportunity He provided. Trust me, once you spend a little bit of time with Him, you will want more. He is your good portion and eventually He will make your cup overflow.

If you are a Mary, encourage others to take time with Jesus in a loving and gentle way. He has been your great reward and that is a hope that is meant to be shared.

In the comments below, I would love to hear what your thoughts are on these two sisters. Where is your heart? This is a safe place to share. Sometimes we just need to see it and say it out loud.  Maybe you are in between, if so, what are your thoughts on the in-between?
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  1. My earnest desire is to view the world with a Mary heart while working with Martha's hands. Thanks for these thoughts on the two sisters. I love pondering their differences and their unique ways of expressing love for Jesus.

    1. I think, as you said, Michele, there is a time when we have to put into action those Mary hearts. Thank you for joining us with your encouragement today! I am glad you are here.

  2. It's so easy to let our lives consume and distract us from what is the better and best option in our day--to sit at the Lord's feet, Jaime. Thanks for this great reminder and stellar linkup, my friend. Always great to visit!

  3. Jaime thank you so much for this post, I am Martha through and through, I absolutely feel like I am constantly working, serving, and not gaining any ground, I need to stop, and sit at the feet of my Lord and let Him minister to me and give me rest. God bless you, and thank you again for sharing this.

  4. Hi, Jaime!
    I've been both, Mary and Martha. To be honest, I like being like Mary better. Martha reminds me of a driven woman with a check off list. Scary. Haha.

  5. I'm a Martha by nature, but I'm trying to become more like Mary and let myself experience divine appointments during the day!

  6. Great admonition. Growing up, I was more like Mary and my sister like Martha. But I envied her busyness and wished I could be more energetic, more the doing type. I guess we all need to discern when we should be a Mary and when we need to be a Martha because both are important. And we can carry Mary in our hearts while doing the Martha thing as Brother Lawrence, the French monk, who mastered practising the presence of God even while he performed his chores in the monastery kitchen.

  7. Thank you, Jaime, for drawing my attention to this passage once again. Like you said, God can teach us new things from the stories we've heard 1000 times. As I re-read it this morning, I was struck by this line: "And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house." If Martha hadn't invited Jesus into her home, Mary never would have had the opportunity to sit as His feet. If I'm honest, when I was younger, I leaned towards Martha and it left me, in your words, "missing Him." In recent years, I have learned to emulate Mary, but I have also avoided doing things that feel too hard, too scary: volunteering at church, making new friends, nurturing old friendships, or even cooking at home rather than ordering take-out. As both Michele and Edith have already said, I strive for both: Mary's attitude and Martha's actions. I imagine, however, it will take me a lifetime to strike this balance. Thank you for encouraging my efforts today!

  8. Thanks for this re-look of the two sisters, Jaime. I think I know what it feels like to be a Mary, and the feeling is great, but all too often my Martha-mind and my love affair with effort pull me away from sitting at Jesus's feet. I find I'm always searching for that balance between being and doing, but I'm learning that the more I lean into Him and trust Him to guide me there, the more it all evens out. I guess it all comes down to abiding in Him and letting Him lead the way.

  9. Thank you for hosting this linkup, Jaime! I just wrote about Martha yesterday in my new book. I can relate to her desires for party perfection. And I can also relate to Mary's contemplative spirit. I have to balance both my Martha and Mary sides daily!

  10. Interesting post, I am having trouble with people who I work with sit here with no integrity get ahead by being opportunitists and making themselves look good with false statements about what they do. I feel like doing the right thing only brings heartache.

    Just something I am going through right now.

  11. Such a great series, Jaime! When it comes to Mary and Martha I think we definitely need to find a balance between the two, but starting with Mary (spending time with Jesus) enables us to achieve the Martha role too! Have a blessed weekend, friend!

  12. It's interesting I would read this blog post today as I have been meditating upon Hebrews 2:14-15:17 today. The portion that has really struck me is where it says, "Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things..." Partook of the same things... Even though Jesus was without sin, He understands our struggles and has "shared in them". This has been such an encouragement to me to come boldly to the throne of Grace even when I've blown it for the gazillionth time. He is our ever merciful high priest.

    Thanks for sharing.


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Seek Him First! Today's Bible Reading

James 1:17
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of Lights with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

It is of utmost importance that you know that Christ died for you. He died for all sinners so that our relationship with Him could be restored.

Because of His sacrifice on the cross we can have peace. Are you seeking more peace today? Peace of the soul can only be given through the redemptive power of Jesus Christ.

I hope that you, too, know the saving grace of an amazing God.
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2 Timothy 1:7