Not Another Mary Martha Story!

I often cringe when girls of all ages begin Biblical discussions on Mary and Martha ... the two power sisters of the Bible.  They have been the topic of so many girl talks I want to vomit.  Mary is the good girl.  Martha the one who works too hard.  Be like Mary.  Avoid being like Martha.  Yeah, yeah we get it.

This morning I saw something a bit different that I haven't heard many talk about before in their typical girl talks on the power duo.  What happened after Jesus used them as an object lesson?

The first time we see them, Martha is preoccupied with making everything perfect for her house guests taking no time to enjoy the presence of Jesus while obedient and Jesus-conscious Mary is sitting at Jesus feet hanging on every word spoken.  Martha is instructed to be more like Mary.  OK.  Point taken.

The next time we see M and M, their brother, Lazarus, has died.  In fact he's been dead and buried for 4 days.  M and M sent word of the initial sickness to their friend, Jesus, yet he doesn't come right away.  They know He can heal.  Come now, O healer, and heal our brother.

When Jesus does come, burial proceedings and mourning crowds are on the minds of the two sisters.  The time for healing has passed.  Mary, eager to learn and live what Jesus taught, stays in the house when she hears the news that Jesus is on his way.  Martha, our little "Do"er, runs to meet him.  When they have their first individual conversations with Jesus, they each say the same thing:
"Lord, if only you had been there, my brother would not have died."
That's a legit response.  Healer, why didn't you come and do what you do when we asked you? But what it most interesting is what Mary doesn't say ... and what Martha does say:
"But even now, I know that God will give you whatever you ask."

Our little Martha has been paying more attention to Jesus' words.  Perhaps the follow-up story here is that after Jesus left the first time, encouraged her to be more still and less busy, she listened.  We can allude that in response to Jesus' call to listen to his teachings and let the power of his words change her life Martha changed.

But what about our "sitting at Jesus' feet" Mary girl?  I'm only speculating here but did she confine Jesus into what she knew of him only by her own experience?  Both of the girls knew Jesus' works as Healer.  They needed a Healer for poor Lazarus.  Jesus could heal him.  But, after Lazarus died, did Mary not see the potential of Jesus being more than Healer but also Resurrecter of Life?  Neither one of them had seen him as Resurrector.  But Martha, by her own admission, believed Jesus could in John 11:25.

Ok, Ok, Ok ... what's my point?
Jesus is who the Bible says he is not what our experiences have been.

Our experiences with Jesus don't confine him to operate only in that box.  I have experienced Jesus as my salvation.  However, the Bible says way more about him than being Savior.  That being true, that can also be true for the rest of the Trinity.  I have experienced God as Father ... but the Bible says much more about who God is other than just Father.  I have experienced Holy Spirit as Comforter ... but the Bible says much more about who Holy Spirit is than just Comforter.

Lets be careful not to poo poo other people's experience's about God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit.  Just because I've never been on ship doesn't mean what others have said about ship travel isn't true.

Changing my story from being a Mary to Martha,



  1. I've always aligned more with Martha than Mary because there has to be someone who takes care of things. I'll sit at feet and listen but first we gotta make sure these people are fed. The people that take care of things are usually "in the know" or know who to contact for information because again you have to take care of business. I think, inherently, Martha knew Jesus was the "go to guy"for this, regardless of the time.

    1. Agree! It wasn't the doing - it was the knowing who was doing the doing!