Are You a Mary or a Martha?

First published July 2017

The Reverend Ray Gibbs reminds us that when we're stuck in a rut and life is getting out of control...God is the answer. 

July for busy people. I don’t know what it is, but when I get to July, I expect things to start to slow down to a ‘lazy hazy’ pace; the days are longer, the weather (should be) warmer, and it comes as a shock to the system when we find that we are busier than usual. For those influenced by the school timetable, it is a rush to get everything done and finished before the big break. For the rest of us it used to slow down, but whether it is the fault of ‘social media’ from emails to Facebook to texts there seems no difference from one day to the next, and so the worry keeps on coming.

I start to worry that things won’t get done. I write lists and as I cross one thing off, two more are added on.  Now, there are some of us who like to worry about everything: the next task; the hold up in the traffic; or how we are perceived by others, what we have or haven’t done, and what we should or shouldn’t do. I’m not one of those people personally, faith and age have made more a Mary than a Martha, but I fully sympathise with those who are.

Time to take some time out - here is a very short story for you!  I heard a story about a rocking chair.  Think about it.   A rocking chair occupies us and gives us something to do, but also a rocking chair doesn’t get us very far.  Worry is like that chair, our minds are continually occupied going back and forth, but actually we aren’t moving on.  Are you stuck in your rocking chair, well in the area of your life where you struggle most: busyness or your reputation or something else? Still the chair, and allow God in, and perhaps allowing God in on your worries might be a start in moving out of that well-used and comfortable rocking chair, and re-discovering each day and each moment for the gift that it is. If life is fraught, tense and busily out of control then here is a prayer for you:

Lord, I pray you’ll help me remember what matters most in the midst of all I have to do: give me eyes that see the needs of those around me.  Give me ears that hear the meaning behind the words. Give me hands that reach out to make a difference.  Give me a heart that beats in tune with Yours rather than with the clock on the wall.  Remind me often that time is intended to be given not spent.  And even in the midst of all my busyness, may I truly be about Your business.  Amen.


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