Before we all jump on the bandwagon against Martha, let’s take a look at what happened. It was Martha that welcomed Jesus into her home. She started off with good intentions. How many times do we start off on something with good intentions and end up getting overwhelmed by what we are doing? That is exactly what happened to Martha. Luke says in 10:40; that Martha was distracted by all that she had taken on. In other words she was burned out. She had lost her focus on why she was doing what she was doing. Martha started looking at it was not just Jesus but all His disciples and those that were with Him. How was she going to feed them all? Where was everyone going to sit? Did she have enough dishes? And the list goes on. Her mind was spinning with all that was going on that she couldn’t focus on what Jesus was saying because everything else in her mind was louder than Him. Then there was Mary, her sister, just sitting there. She should have been helping her, so Martha thought.
Finally, when she reached the end of her rope she went to Jesus complaining that Mary wasn’t helping her. The response that she got from Jesus isn’t what she was expecting. However, it was what she needed. A gentle reminder that she was focused on what was going on around her and the cares of life that she had forgotten why, for Whom she was serving. When you have the gift of service it is so easy to focus on what needs to be done and that no one else will do it so might as well do it or it won’t get done. When you start to go there that is when you are more likely to get burned out. You have taken your focus off of Who you are serving and focused on all you have to do because no one else is doing it.
We are a big family, the family of God, and although it may seem that there is a lot to do and no one is going to get it done; God has a plan and it is not for you to do someone else’s job. Keep your focus on what He has asked you to do. He didn’t ask Martha to prepare a meal for everyone she took that on herself. At first she wanted to do it but started resenting Mary because she was listening to Jesus’ teaching and she had put herself in a position with all she was doing that she couldn’t even hear Him talk. Keep your focus on what He has asked you to do and not everything else for there are brothers and sisters that need to do their part, just not in your time.