22 November, 2011

Kitchen Duty

Thanksgiving approaches and regardless of your family traditions, foods or gathering time we have a lot in common…a lot of food to eat, football games, casseroles, family we love, family we tolerate, dirty dishes, kitchen duty and a Martha. Martha is the one who keeps it all rolling – she’s the one orchestrating the gathering. She’s the one serving.

You remember Martha in the Bible:

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. Luke 10:38-39

And then again in John 11:20-22, 27

When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went out to meet him, but Mary stayed at home. “Lord, “ Martha said to Jesus, “if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask.”

“Yes, Lord, she told him, I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world.”

Don’t you think that Martha of the Bible has always seemed to be on the negative side of sermons? But I love Martha. Look at her anew in this scripture. She served. Yes, she was distracted and complained about her sister but she also went out to meet Jesus. She didn’t wait for Him to come to her she went out to find Him and talk to Him. She presented her grief, worry and concern to Him but then proclaimed, "yes, you are the Christ, the Son of God".

I remember when I was a young girl we would have the big Thanksgiving meal at my mama and daddy’s house. There were a lot of us, which always meant a lot of dishes. My mama always cooked many, many different foods, which meant a lot of pots and pans to wash, and no dishwasher!! Yuck! As my sisters and I gathered in the kitchen we were assigned duties and always noticed some family members made themselves disappear when clean up began! We grumbled and complained but our mama kept serving and serving seeming not to notice who was helping and who was sitting. Her only goal was serving. Her only goal was to go out of her way and offer love.

I want to serve without complaining on Thanksgiving Day and in every day I live. I want to run out and meet Jesus on Thanksgiving morning and proclaim, YOU are Christ, the Son of God. Use me to serve my family, use me to serve those who don’t know you, use me to offer your love, use me in the kitchen and in my home and in my workplace, and in my school. Use me with the unlovable. Use me amongst the dirty dishes.

This Thanksgiving, I’ll see you in the kitchen!

P.S. Our family "Martha" is named Pat. She serves our family continuously, without complaint, every day of the year. She serves our ill Mama/Meemaw in unceasing ways and in overwhelming hours. She loves me well. She loves my children and my husband. And I bet our family of 30+ people all feel this same special care from her. She has run out to meet Jesus and proclaim His name and we, her family, have felt that blessing through her serving each and every one of us. Thank you Pat, for letting us see and know Jesus through you.