“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41-42
This is one area I struggle with - time and time again. I do not sit down to spend time with our guests rather I find one thing after another to do - for the guests of course!
I would start my day very early and work on so many dishes and stuff and soon things will get so overwhelming that I end up complaining about the family members who do not "pitch in" or "share the chores".
When the meal is served I hurriedly finish mine to rush with making coffee and snacks and the wheel spins non stop, while the rest of the family enjoys a leisure conversation with the guests.
Finally when I am ready to sit down it would be time for the guests to leave. Then I keep a long face that I didn't have any fun! Clearly I am like Martha on this. I miss out on the fun and fellowship as I am distracted by the endless list of chores to do.
But these days I am changing - though very slowly.
It sure felt awkward to order in a pizza for the unexpected guests who showed up on a weekday, instead of cooking a proper meal; but this way I too could relax catching up on things we had missed out on each other over the past decade.
We brew some coffee in the electrical coffee maker, which the guests could help themselves to, again giving me more of a quality time I could enjoy with them rather than hiding in the kitchen all the time or worse yet, ushering them in to help make tea (which I have shamelessly done over the past).
This way I can entertain more guests than I normally would or could or even should. I love to host - love to make friends - love to keep friends - love to get together as much as possible. Definitely my love for my guests stay the same. It is how I show it has changed - I appreciate their time more than my fancy show.
There is one problem though - some friends are not happy. Am I imagining things? No, not at all.
They are so used to my overwhelming attention that now to see me just sit around and talk nonsense is hard for them to take. I am no longer the "perfect host" they have come to know of me as. I have become one of them - a cool host at that! Laid back, relaxed, nothing more, nothing less.
One even confronted me directly, "Queen! What is wrong with you?". "Nothing really; just taking it easy..." was my careful response. The Martha in me warns, "Get up! Spin!" but I shrug it off. "They are not here for your show, but your time, so stay!", Mary insists.
Only one thing is needed, spending time together; everything else is a distraction. Martha no more; becoming Mary...