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Mary or Martha?

Mary-or-Martha elizabeth-georgeMary and Martha. Why do we love these two sisters so much? Because at times we identify with both of them! Many of us are women on missions, whether home-schooling our children, making carpool rounds, organizing a ministry, or running a business. With such pressured and purposed service, it’s easy to lose sight of our need for passionate worship.

Yes, purpose and momentum are needed. We must be Marthas at times. But like Mary, we also need to pause during our hectic schedules and commune with the Lord. 

Relating to Martha

Do you more commonly relate to Martha’s request for help? She sees her sister thoroughly enjoying the visit from Jesus while she feels compelled to make everything perfect for the gathering. Have you ever hosted a dinner and realized later that you barely took time to enjoy your guests? I think many of us have Martha tendencies, so let’s embrace what Jesus offers Martha.

When We are Weary

Jesus expresses empathy. He immediately recognizes the pressure Martha is under when He says, “You are worried and troubled about many things” (Luke 10:41). When we are weary, Jesus sees our trials and our burdens. He knows we are frazzled or frustrated. 

As compassionate as Jesus is, He also leads Martha to the truth. We are to focus on only one thing, and Mary has chosen that one thing—to focus on Jesus and serve and learn from Him (verse 42). There is nothing more important than sitting at the feet of our Lord!

Finding Balance

The Martha vs. Mary pull in us might always take place, but hopefully we’ll learn to place our emphasis on “the one thing”...the right Person...Jesus. When we take time to worship, we discover that communion with God is the starting place of all our service for God and others.

Martha and Mary were so fortunate because they were able to be with Jesus while He was living in bodily form on this earth. Although we don’t get that, we have Jesus living within us, a constant presence in our lives! 

What can we do?

We can reach out in Jesus’ name to someone in need of compassion. We can serve a meal to someone who needs hospitality. We can have ongoing dialogue with God through prayer. We are so blessed! We are in the presence of our Sustainer, and we can take the strength and compassion we draw from Him to serve Him by sharing it with those in our world.


Lord, I want to sit at Your feet as Your disciple and friend. I want to see You smile as I give You praise and share my day. Help me turn my heart to the one thing that matters more than all else...my time with You. Amen. 


Creating a Beautiful LifeEach new day presents opportunities to grow your faith, manage your work and goals, and make good use of the time God gives you. This book for busy women will help you create a more beautiful and productive life.


Do you take the time to sit at Jesus’ feet each day? If not, rearrange your schedule to make this possible.


When we are weary, Jesus sees our trials and our burdens. He knows we are frazzled or frustrated.

Jim and Elizabeth George

Jim and Elizabeth George are bestselling authors and national speakers dedicated to helping people live a life after God’s own heart. Together, they have written over 150 books with more than 14 million copies sold around the world. For over 35 years, the teachings and steadfast example of Elizabeth and Jim have helped countless men and women:

  • Simplify life by focusing on God’s priorities.
  • Appreciate God’s Word and apply it to everyday situations.
  • Respond to circumstances with confidence by seeing yourself through God’s loving eyes.
  • Increase closeness in marriage by serving and honoring each other.
  • Powerfully shape the hearts of children and teenagers.
  • Enjoy greater intimacy with God.

Learn more about Jim and Elizabeth George here.

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