As a mom of multiples, I would consider myself an expert multi-tasker. I have 8-month-old twin boys, and it’s pretty rare to find me without at least one baby in my arms, doing a bazillion things at once.
My morning routine involves feeding 2 babies, changing diapers, getting them dressed; all the while getting myself ready for work. The other morning I found myself juggling an insane number of tasks: I was making coffee, while making bottles, then putting a pacifier in to soothe a crying baby, while packing my lunch, while making a fruit smoothie, helping up the other baby who had just tipped over and gotten stuck, unloading the dishwasher, letting the dog outside, feeding the dog, and packing my work bag. By the time I sat down, my coffee was cold. My brain runs a mile a minute with a to-do list to the moon and back. There’s a physical fatigue that comes with this frenzy—but also a mental fatigue. While I’ve clocked out of my paying job at the end of the day, there’s no clocking out of parenthood. Each day is an endless to-do list of diaper changes, feedings, playing; that starts up all over again the next day. Don’t get me wrong, I love being a mom; but by 7pm each night, I am donezo.
The chaos of parenthood, which many of you know all too well, reminds me of the well-known story of Mary and Martha. Found in Luke 10, it tells the story of two sisters who welcomed Jesus into their home. Martha was running around like the perfect hostess, prepping the house and meal. Mary however spent her time resting at the feet of Jesus.
Luke 10: 38-42
As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
I used to categorize myself as a Mary. Don’t get me wrong, I was organized and methodical, but I could always take a step back to ‘stop and smell the roses,’ so to speak. I’d be the first to tell you- “the dishes can wait till tomorrow- let’s just relax on the porch.” But lately, I’d put myself in the Martha category. There are only so many hours in the day, and juggling all my hats seems impossible some days. Keeping a clean home, a well-fed husband, loved babies, a happy dog, a content boss, and giving my patients 100% during the work-day; and then having quiet time with Jesus—it seems unmanageable.
But I have to remember, that in this story, Jesus isn’t praising Martha for her pristinely clean home and perfectly cooked Pinterest dinner. He’s applauding Mary, who silenced her preoccupations (and her cell phone!) to sit at the feet of Jesus. That time spent at the feet of Jesus is something that cannot be taken away from her.
So instead of applauding myself for my multi-tasking abilities, today I want to spend some time resting at the feet of Jesus. Who wants to join me?