A Devotion Based on Luke 10:38-42

Mary and Martha, along with their brother Lazarus, were good friends with Jesus. When we read the story, we often wonder why Jesus had to be so hard on Martha. She was doing what was the norm for women in that society those days. Mary, on the other hand, chose to learn from Jesus, defying the expectations of what women should do in those times. And Martha was upset with Mary not only because she didn’t help her but also for not being what was expected of her as a woman.

Many non-Christians women today think that Christians are prejudiced against women. Christian wives are required to submit under their husband’s authority regardless of the situation (Ephesians 5). Or they heard that only a male priest can lead a mass even though that is mainly limited to the Roman Catholic Church. All these things lead many non-Christians to think that Christian women would only stay at home listening to what the husband says. We only go to work when our husband told us to. Christian women are old fashioned and irrelevant. This couldn’t be farther from the truth.

Many people have the wrong idea that the ideal woman in the Bible is a domesticated woman. If we read Proverbs 31, we would see the kind of Christian women God intended us to be. Strong, independent and capable woman who can do it all – they can do household responsibilities while also being a great manager at work.

We need to be both Mary and Martha. Someone who would do all the work yet still humble enough to keep learning from Jesus. Martha in her desire to serve Jesus neglected her guest. And in her pride she thought Mary’s style of serving is inferior to her because Mary didn’t fit the norm of what women should do. That’s why Jesus rebuked her. It’s not that Jesus did not appreciate what Martha was doing but Mary was doing something more important: being discipled by Jesus just as he discipled Peter, James, and John.

But if for a second we think that we don’t need Martha, then we are so wrong. Imagine going to a church where everybody is just sitting in a pew listening while nobody do any ministries. Sometimes we need to minister, sometimes we must be ministered too. Sometimes we are Martha and sometimes we are Mary.

We need to show the world what a woman of God is supposed to look like. We are as strong and capable as all the other modern women in the world today. But most importantly, we are also as dedicated and faithful as any man in the church today. We are the real deal.