It was Pentecost Sunday; a day to celebrate. It’s a five-minute stroll from my house to church, and I was eager to get there. Maybe too eager – if that’s not a heretical statement.

When my children were small, I was forever reminding them to watch where they were going. (Not that they took much notice – the eldest once walked into a gatepost because he was trying to read a book on the way to school.) I should have listened to myself: I turned my ankle on a stretch of uneven pavement, lost my balance and ended up sprawled across the grass verge. Being a “tough Yorkshire lass”, however, I got up and carried on.

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By mid-afternoon, my right ankle was half as big again as my left. Hubby looked alarmed. Fortunately, our nearest hospital has a minor injuries unit, so half an hour later I was being prodded at by a dour Scottish nurse. I waited for him to tell me to stop fussing and send me home with some paracetamol.
“Definitely broken,” he said, “we’ll find you some crutches.”

Six weeks of enforced rest sounds attractive – but I’ve discovered that I’m hopeless at sitting still. Even when my body is (of necessity) idle my mind still whizzes along at 100 miles per hour. And so I’ve been writing reports, preparing for exams, messing about on Facebook…

I’m frequently challenged by the story of Mary and Martha (Luke 10: 38 – 42). I’d like to be a Mary, someone who’s comfortable sitting at Jesus’ feet and enjoying his company. If I’m honest, though, I know that I’m often more like Martha. It’s not that I don’t want to be with Jesus: I’m just too easily distracted. I feel the need to impress God with my activity levels rather than remembering that he loves me for who I am.

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Thankfully, God hasn’t finished with me yet; I am “a work in progress”. As I get older (and hopefully wiser), I trust that he will help me let go of my busyness, and learn instead to rest in his presence.

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9 Responses to

  1. Clare Weiner says:

    Hi, Enjoyed your blogpost. Congratulations on getting it sorted and out there!
    Interesting how we all feel we are Marthas but must become Marys!!! We imagine because the translation says ‘Mary has chosen the better part” (or similar depending on which you use) that this is how it is set for all time – but it could, actually, be that Mary, at that time, was commended… simply since Jesus was aware he would not be around in bodily form for ever in his friends’ lives.
    Or, it could be, he was intimating that women were allowed to do this, listen and learn, they did not have to rush about cooking & cleaning, all the time, just because they were women. We possibly don’t realise this because, for us, 21st century Western women, education is a normal, expected thing, and ‘equality’ is also: what Jesus said to Mary probably shocked and disturbed people – whereas what Martha said to Mary probably made them nod their wise heads, “Yes, Mary doesn’t know her place, she will come to no good behaving as if she was a man.’
    Just a thought… !!

  2. I can so identify with what you’ve written here – a great first post for your blog – just keep writing girl! xx

  3. Lovely post, Fiona. Sorry to hear you’re ‘laid up’… guess you’ll have more time for writing now, though? Yes, God uses everything for good, doesn’t He. And we probably all need to learn to be better at spending more time in His presence, enjoying Him and He us! Love the pic of the empty bench, just calling to be enjoyed. 🙂

  4. Fran Hill says:

    Keep posting. And resting!

  5. Lynne Greens says:

    Yes Fiona I can relate to this. I’m far to restless and need to be active. God has slowed you right down. He obviously wants you to spend time focusing on him and less on our earthly lives. God does love us for who we are. Great blog, keep it up! X x

  6. I sometimes fantasise about breaking my leg when I am so exhausted with working and family and then I think how stupid that is….and there you are! I hope you get better soon but also learning to rest is something that does take time…and now you have it! Love the way you have written about it.

  7. Joanne says:

    I think I should have been named Martha!!! I hope in your final days with your boot on (Unless they make you keep it) that you can rest in Jesus and enjoy peace xx

    • Clare Weiner says:

      It’s perfectly okay to be Martha (see my comment above?) though if she could’ve just stopped worrying, I think that was what Jesus wanted – for her to consider the lilies etc. Without Martha, where would their nice meal have been, after all?

  8. Helen Murray says:

    This is lovely! Beautiful looking blog (I sometimes wish I’d gone with WordPress), good pictures and a great first post. I too feel the constant Mary/Martha tension and find myself dashing all over the place doing this and that and feeling that I need to get everything done just so, make everyone else happy, then finding some time just me and Jesus and realising all over again what’s important.
    Looking forward to reading more!

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