A few days after this blog posts, I will be leaving with more than 20 other FUMC Tupelo adults and youth for what will be my second mission trip to Honduras. Having been before, my emotions will hopefully not run all over the place like last year but one emotion I pray I will keep foremost is anticipation of what God will do on this trip. Not just on our team and what we will hopefully accomplish, but I pray that God works directly on me, just as He did last year. You see, last year God basically “hit” me with the proverbial 2x4…as I was most definitely having a few “Martha moments.”
We all know the story from Luke 10: 38 As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39 Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. 40 But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.”
41 But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! 42 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.” NLT
Jesus and his disciples were traveling to Jerusalem when they stopped in a village at the home of Mary and Martha. The Message says: “A woman by the name of Martha welcomed him and made him feel quite at home.” Did you catch that phrase “quite at home”?! Can you imagine Jesus being so comfortable that he felt at home?
Her sister, Mary, sat at Jesus’ feet, listening to what he taught. However, the Bible tells us in verse 40 “But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made.” (NIV) Too distracted to hear what Jesus was teaching. And that is what happened to me last year in Honduras…I became Martha. Don’t get me wrong…the WORK we did in Honduras is vitally important. We lived out Matthew 25:35-40 each day. The homes and school rooms we built, the food we bought and dispersed and the dental clinic we provided were much needed by the villagers in Diamante. The work we will do this year also has the potential to be life changing for the people of Honduras. But I lost my focus. I was too busy thinking about all we needed to DO that I forgot about simply sitting at his feet and listening to what he was telling me. I forgot to just LOVE on the people of Honduras. And to me, showing the love of Jesus is the most life changing thing we can do.
It strikes me that as I read Luke 10, the story of the Good Samaritan is just prior to the story of Martha and Mary. We are taught that we are to love our neighbor as ourselves and as Jesus points out we are to have compassion on others. As I was writing this post, the song "Live Like That" by the Sidewalk Prophets was playing and the words express so much better what I want to say:
Sometimes I think
What will people say of me
When I'm only just a memory
When I'm home where my soul belongs
Was I love
When no one else would show up
Was I Jesus to the least of us
Was my worship more than just a song
I want to live like that
And give it all I have
So that everything I say and do
Points to You
If love is who I am
Then this is where I'll stand
Never holding back
I want to live like that.
As I prepare for this year’s trip, I pray that I always remember the lessons learned last year and that I am not only being the hands and feet of Jesus in my work but in my love for all his children as well.
I want to live like that.
Let us do life together, growing closer to Jesus, and closer to each other, through stories and experiences from the people of our church. Join us as we begin a new series for the Advent season, beginning Tuesday, November 28.