Today's interview comes from the lovely Donna of dlw-walkinfaith.tumblr.com, where she uses her blog as a platform to encourage people in their faith in Jesus Christ. Read on as Donna expands upon Martha (her favourite woman of the Bible), why she can identify with her and what we, as modern women, can learn from Martha and implement in our everyday lives.
Who is your favourite woman of the Bible and why? What would you say that modern women can learn from her?
My favourite woman of the Bible is an unlikely choice, I’m sure. The one I most identify with is Martha- of Mary and Martha fame. Why? Because I believe I am just like her, and working every day to be more “Mary-ish”. I grew up as a Catholic, the middle of three daughters, surrounded by two sisters who were (and still are) extremely outgoing and who now have incredibly financially lucrative jobs. My path always seemed different. I got really good grades through school, but my future was never easy for me to discern. I left college after two years, and started working.
I have never made a lot of money, but distinguished myself in being nurturing and taking care of things. For everyone. I was married, and became an at-home mom of two girls. I took care of them and their dad, the house, the errands, the finances, everything. Then I got divorced- and still took care of everything for my girls (I had full custody). Then I met my future husband (a father of three children) and ultimately we all ended out living in the same home (he got full custody of his children); so all 5 plus 2 adults made for a very busy, crazy home.
At this time, I had a full-time job, but still felt that who I was, was totally defined by what I did. On top of working full-time, I cooked, I cleaned; I organised. I went to school functions. I had friends. I had pets. It was always about everybody else. I put my needs aside- which sounds very Christ-like, except I didn’t do it for Him and His glory. I did it for me. Because, without all that, who was I? And like Martha, all the while I did it, I grumbled because when others were relaxing and enjoying, I was “doing”. Even though it was my choice.
It wasn’t until 2014, when my Dad was diagnosed with cholangiocarcinoma (liver cancer)- and my sisters and I were flying back and forth to visit my Mom and Dad- when I admitted to a friend of many, many years:
“I’m 52 years old and I don’t know how to pray. I’ve been a Catholic my whole life, and I don’t know God, and now, why would He even listen to me?”
Thank God for my friend, through whom He reached out and touched my heart. She gave me direction- gave me the push I needed to start reading His Word. That was all I needed- and I CHOSE to follow Jesus. I got baptised and accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I got down on my knees and prayed for the first time in my life! At the end, I prayed with my Dad, and my heart was heavy knowing his time was short, but happy when he said “I’m looking forward to meeting Jesus”. He did pass in January of 2015.
I have Jesus, always, with me. However, I still struggle with my internal Martha. The Martha that chooses to “busy” herself with cleaning and cooking and helping, and who does not always choose “the good part that shall not be taken away from her”. Martha is my favourite, because I see her in me, and in so many women today. The “every woman”. The woman who struggles. The woman who wants things to be “right”, who tries her hardest to make them “right” and who sometimes fails to see Jesus’ hand extended in help in an offering of peace; a yoke that is light. The woman that, for some reason, is afraid to stop, rest; relax. (Is it fear of what the world tells us?)
As a “modern” woman, I know that the world says “WORK!” It tells us that quiet time with the Lord is wasted time. That resting and relaxing in His presence is odd behaviour. But, my friend, that time is so very precious. To sit at His feet- I long to be there forever, in eternity and listen to Him speak, teach; lead. The “Martha” that lives inside each of us, she needs to look at Mary and say, “I too choose the good portion.” And then leave the guilt and what the world feeds us at the foot of the Cross, and relax in the presence of the Lord- as He wants us to do! With Jesus as my guide, I know He will help me. He’s my Lord, my Saviour, my God, my redeemer, my friend and I love Him.
Please finish the sentence: I am a Christian woman who is...
I am a Christian woman who is far from perfect, struggling; afraid- even though I know Jesus is with me. Because Jesus is worth it all, I want to shine His light, but know I fail every day. Still, I will walk the walk and talk the talk. And I will try to love like Jesus, because that’s His commandment.
Please finish the sentence: I am a Christian woman who is not…
I am a Christian woman who is not strong! Always happy! Perfect! The pain and sorrow and guilt and judgement - it is all real. And I try desperately to not speak it, cause it; reap it. Reality is, we will struggle in this world - physically, emotionally; spiritually. Jesus told us this would be the case. He also said, “I have overcome the world”. So I rest in Him, His power, and know the way this story ends. I just walk in faith, by faith, and follow my Leader.
Any final words of encouragement?
Remain in Christ. He is truly the way, the truth; the life. He accepts each and every one of us, where we are; for who we are. Because we are all HIS. Imagine, the God of the universe, of Creation, has CHOSEN to be our Father. He wanted us so badly to be in relationship with Him that He sent His only Son to atone for our sins and transgressions- the perfect and final sacrifice. He raised Jesus from the dead- resurrection power!- to say,
“Yes, You alone are worthy, Your sacrifice is acceptable! Now, come to Me, My children..."
I mean, that’s just a huge “WOW moment". So, I say to you, I am blessed. You are blessed. We are all so very blessed. We are truly loved by the one true King.