Over the course of the past couple of years I have been searching for a deeper connection to God. It began in 2020 when I went to visit my sister in Mexico and visited the Catholic church in the Zocalo in Mexico City. I was so overcome with emotion inside this beautiful church – it was if God was wrapping me up in his arms and welcoming me home.
I spent a good many years angry with God – I didn’t make a conscious choice to be angry with Him. It was more like I felt like my life had become a mess so I had better take control of it. I didn’t want God in control, I needed to take on that role. (Yes, insert eye roll now. That is not how things work, I get that.) In the midst of the chaotic implosion of my marriage I turned away, not toward Him. I wish I had done that differently. In this church, in Mexico City, I began to repair my relationship with Him.
How in the world do you get to know GOD??
So, I started talking to Him more and more. This has led to a peace in me I did not have before. It has also pushed me to seek a deeper relationship with Jesus. Yeah, I’ve been to Bible studies, I attended Sunday School, I’ve gone to church, but nowhere in my upbringing did I get a tutorial on how to have a personal relationship with Jesus. So, now, here at 51, I am creating my OWN journey toward this illusive relationship I am craving with our Lord.
To begin this journey I went on a retreat at a local Catholic retreat center and had some wonderful time in silence, prayer, reading, and conversation with a spiritual advisor. I learned to be quiet there. And, I realized I am not quiet in my everyday life. How do you have a relationship with someone if you don’t ever stop to hear them respond to you? I realized in my prayer life I am a great talker and not so great a listener. I cannot get to know my Lord without stopping, like Mary, and sitting at his feet to just LISTEN in silence for his loving responses to me – whether they are the responses I want or not! I am such a Martha, which I know is also a gift and one that is needed in every woman to run her household and manage her family, but we must find a way to embrace the Mary in us too. How do we do that????????????
I had been getting much better at being quiet. I realized this past week that I have not engaged in quiet like I did after this retreat and that I need to be more purposeful and disciplined in allowing myself the space for quiet listening and discernment. Mary sat quietly at Jesus’ feet; Martha was a busy bee handling the “must be dones” that come with having a gathering in your home. How do we set aside the “must be dones” and sit quietly at the Lord’s feet today?
We drive in silence.
We don’t yell for Alexa to play music the moment we walk in the door.
We cook dinner in quiet.
We turn the TV/Ipad/computer OFF.
We find a moment to sit outside and feel the sun on our faces.
Any one of those things will do. Choose one and then quiet your mind and listen.
2 responses to “I’m such a Martha. . .”
At church we have a group reading “The Good and Beautiful God” by James Bryan Smith which is really about that topic “spiritual formation” which I have been trying to grasp for years. I am finding many of these themes to be in various places from various theological approaches. It’s the hearing back which has confounded and aggravated me for years. So…we all need this badly.
as a fellow Martha and wanna be Mary, I am carving quiet times in the early morning and late at night just to be and be quiet. ❤️