Mother Mary, Mother Martha

I love being a Mom.

I also love my Bible.

And I really, really love when God points out to me just how much the two go together.

Our Summer Days are full of friends coming over and swimming and lots of outside time.

Which makes for wonderfully tired kids at the end of the day but also for an extremely messy house each day.

(still not sure how the house gets so crazy dirty when we are outside all day!)

So I've designated Wednesdays as Cleaning Day.

Nobody over.  No lounging by the pool until the house is clean.

I woke up this past Wednesday knowing that I had a mountain of laundry and some floors that needed serious attention.

I was ready to bust it out.

Then Josie asked if we could go swim.

Just the two of us.

And I felt my heart tug.

And I remembered a story about two women.

One who chose busy work and one who chose quality time with her Savior.

See, I'm a Martha Mom.

I have a hard time just being with my kids.

Sure, I love being around them, but for every second I'm playing with them I'm running through a list of To Do's in my head.

Cleaning, organizing, redoing, and shopping.

Always things that need to get done.

I think to myself, "after I get this done, there will be plenty of time to play."

But after that thing, there seems to always be another thing.

And then there's naps to be had and dinner to be cooked.

Then dinner leads to more cleaning and baths and bed.

Then I lay down and wonder where the day went, promise myself to play tomorrow, then wake up to another To Do List.

Yes, I'm surely a Martha Mom.

But I don't want to be.

How many times have I found myself complaining to God that other Moms get more time with their kids?  Whining that I ran out of time?

I remember what Jesus says to Martha when she complains that her sister isn't helping with all the preparations, her never ending To Do List.

He simply says, "Mary has chosen the right thing and it shall not be taken from her."

As I looked down as Josie's excited hazel eyes, I knew I had a choice to make.

And it was bigger then the moment we were standing in.

You see, babies grow.

They turn into 4 year olds who don't need you every second.

Then they go (without permission) and transform into teenagers, adults, mothers with their own kids.

Even though the days seem to pass so slow, the years fly away in the blink of an eye.

Will Josie and Gabe remember me as a woman who never had time for them?  Who had sparkling floors but no memories?

The Martha in me wanted to tell Josie that we'd swim later.

But the Mary I want to be said, "surely we have an hour to spare for some swimming."

And as we put on our swimsuits I could feel God telling me I'd chosen the right thing.

And that cannot be taken from me.


Olive Naturally said...

Your post totally touched my heart today!

I too, am a Martha Mom... (wishing to be more like a Mary Mom.) It is so easy for me to get caught up in the constant upkeep of our home - As a stay-at-home Mom, I feel like that is how I am expected to contribute to our household. But in the wee hours of the night after my kids (and hubby) are fast asleep, I realize that yet another day has slipped by and it breaks my heart. It's then that I tell myself that "tomorrow" will be different and I will just throw caution to the wind, forget the cleaning and do nothing but focus on time with my kids... But with the morning sun, comes meal prep, clean-up, dishes, laundry, dirty floors, messy rooms, etc. etc.

Thank you for showing me that it doesn't have to be all or nothing... My goal this week is to set aside an hour each day to just "play"!!

I think your children are very lucky to have you!!

Thank you for being an inspiration to me!

Stephanie said...

I am not a religious person but could so identify with your feelings and what you're going through. Thanks for the post. :)

Beth said...

Oh man!!! Can you say CONVICTION!!!!!! Thanks for the reminder:)
Martha 2

Keri said...

Hi there! I clicked over to your blog last week from Embrace the Camera, and I have been captivated by it since then. What a sweet, loving heart you seem to have!! And your writing style is wonderful, too - intelligent yet playful, which is often hard to come by in a blog...

My husband and I are praying about when/if/how God would have us add to our family through adoption (we have 3 biological children), and I have to admit that I had never thought about foster-to-adopt until reading your blog. Perhaps this is the Lord opening my eyes...?

I also relate COMPLETELY to this post about being a Martha Mom. I am so guilty of putting my tasks before my tots, and then feeling sad at the end of the day because although I was with them all day long, I wasn't really *with* them at all.... Thanks for this reminder to choose what will really matter 5, 10, 20 years from now. And for eternity.

MyLinda said...

All of it...so so very true! Like you, I'm trying to say yes more often to those moments that my girls ask for when I "think" I have so many other things to do. This week I helped make and sat and played with flarp for an hour lol!!

Amy said...

Love your guts! And by the way...I think you are a wonderful mom :)

Jessica said...

K-fly a kite, make a kite to decorate and hang from the ceiling with beautiful bows on the tail, make a kite sun catcher from wax paper and tissue paper or contact paper and tissue paper (cut into a diamond shape, have Josie rip or cut squares of tissue paper to place on sticky side, hang a ribbon tail and hang in window!

U-under or umbrella. Cut umbrella shape from construction paper, let Josie glue on to a blue paper, water color (get it, umbrella/water colors) then glue and silver glitter make perfect raindrops! OR for under you can play Who's That Hiding Under the Parachute (or sheet!) each person takes a turn going Under as the others wiggle the parachute as you sing "Who's that Hiding under the parachute, under the parachute, under the parachute? Whos that hiding under the parachute, come out and say hello!" then the hiding person jumps out and says "Hello!"
Another for UNDER is to learn about Michelangelo and how he painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel on his back. Tape paper to the underside of a kiddie table and have Josie paint on her back!

Q-queen. make crowns, wrap yourselves in capes or stoles (aka pillow cases!), do the Queen wave and be regal for a day!

Jennifer Harper said...

I really loved this! This is exactly how most of us stay home moms feel. We are in charge of keeping everything running smoothly at the house and sometimes playtime gets pushed aside.