I must admit, when faced with the question of whom I am the most like, I have to say I feel I’m more like Martha.
In this age of self-help and you can do anything you want to do, it is very easy to fall into the lure of control. While I know I can’t control everything, I do have a tendency to want things to go a certain way. It’s more than making choices, but trying to making the choices that will lead to what I want. As one who enjoys cooking and baking, I can sympathize when Martha asks Jesus to make Mary help her out (Lk 10:40). After all, she wants things to be just right for Him. Wouldn’t Jesus have asked Mary to help Martha if it was His will, even without Martha asking? I don’t think Martha realized than she was ordering God to do something for her so that her will might be done. How often have I prayed for things of that nature? Oh, just every time I go on a long trip, it’s: “God please see me safely there without incident.” While I don’t think anyone would actually pray for something to go wrong, I think the prayer should be modified to include, “as long as it is Your will.”
For Mary, the food prep and serving would always be there, but she must have known that Jesus would not. Instead of being anxious about tasks, she sat at Jesus’ feet and listened. Anxiety is the fear of not being in control. How can I be more like Mary and less anxious about things? By sitting at the feet of Jesus and giving over my concerns to Him and, most importantly, listening. I do try to turn things over to God, but then I start to wonder how situations will play out, or how I should prepare myself, and the old anxiety creeps in. It is important to recognize that and to always try. I know Jesus will always be there for me and with me in every situation.
How much more can my life be stress free if I turn everything over to Jesus? It doesn’t mean not planning things, otherwise nothing would get done. It’s more about planning and then turning the actual events/situations over to Jesus to watch over and guide me when the unexpected occurs. Sometimes it’s in the detours of life that the greatest blessings come.