Monday, March 31, 2014

Dishpan hands...... at rest.

The stress lately is just melting off from me. Which is not something you often hear me say. Usually I am being crushed under the weight of the stress. I have been trying to take care of myself emotionally, physically and spiritually. I am the person who gets tripped up often, and finds myself toiling in the kitchen. I worry that if I do not prepare the food, it won’t be there. And then I take it a step further, and worry about how good the food is for those who are going to eat it, and then try to adjust the menu so that there is something everyone wants to eat. Then I worry how much everyone is eating, or not eating. Then I find myself in the kitchen washing the dishes, and then worrying about tomorrow’s meals. Call me Martha! My fingers are wrinkled from soapy water. I smell of the burnt chicken in the oven. My elbow grease is lathered all over the place in my frantic efforts to get things done. My name is Martha.
When I read the story in Luke, I find myself relating more to Martha than Mary. I can feel the strain in her muscles, the sting in her eyes, the water on her hands.

But the great thing is that Martha’s can change. We can become Mary’s. And the last few days the stress has been melting away, because in those moment I find myself bent over a hot stove, with wrinkled hands for being submerged in the soapy water. I start to grumble! And then I realize what I am doing. I realize I am in the kitchen slaving away, slaving away at the wrong thing! And then I relocate myself to being sitted at his feet. Like my prior post, where I am realizing I have no control and learning to let go. You cannot let go of something without replacing it with something else. In this case, it is replacing it with my location. Relocating myself to being at his feet.

“Martha, Martha.” The Lord answered “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” ~Luke 10:41-42

I still find myself from the other room calling out to the Lord “Lord don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” ~Luke 10:40b

It is pretty lonely and miserable in the kitchen. I am not sure what Mary was doing at that moment as she was prepping for her guests. I mean, God himself was her guest. I am sure she felt the pressure for sure. But in those moments when I find myself worried and upset about many things, and my fingertips still dripping with soapy water. I realize how hard I am trying to work in my own power. How I am trying to earn. Works. And often when I am at his feet, I still have the suds from the dishes on my hands.

With soapy hands and at His feet. I might not be lacking the soapy hands, but I am learning to relocate. 

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