When Jesus Comes Over

When Jesus Comes Over

Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:38-42 ESV

The first time I read this passage, I had to read it again. Isn’t serving a good thing?

But if we look closely, we see that Martha was distracted with serving. You are distracted when you allow something in life to take the place of Jesus. Another word for that is idolatry.

Now, Martha would probably argue that she was focused on Jesus. After all, he was the one she was doing everything for! But her attitude reveals that she had misplaced her attention.

Three things happened to Martha as a result of her distraction. She became exhausted, bitter, and missed the point.

We can tell Martha is exhausted and bitter because she snaps at Jesus, demanding that he tell her (slacker) sister Mary to help her. As bad as it seems, I can relate to this moment.

When I prepare for guests, I’m often so focused on wanting everything to be perfect that I do more than what’s necessary. That’s when the exhaustion sets in. Exhaustion quickly turns into bitterness when I have the thought, “Hey, what’s my husband been doing all this time?” If Jesus were in my house I might ask him to tell my husband to help too. Usually he’s doing something useful, but if it isn’t a task I value, I misjudge it as being unimportant.

Martha made that same mistake. Mary was in fact doing something valuable. She chose the most important thing− to sit with Jesus. Martha was so busy trying to do for Jesus that she missed the goodness and glory of his presence. Thank goodness he set her straight!

God often has to set me straight too. In the busyness of life I can lose sight of what really matters. I work, I plan, I dream, but the hardest thing to do is rest in Jesus’ presence. I constantly feel pressure to go, go, go!

When my exhaustion, bitterness, and distraction reach a fever pitch, God whispers, “Stop. I have already done enough. Come be with me, and be fulfilled.”

Erica Evans About Erica Evans

Erica Evans is a wife, HR professional, and a Highly Sensitive Person. She believes God has given each woman a unique calling, but fear and discouragement can set in on the journey. On her blog, Confident, Competent & Fulfilled she writes honestly about emotions in order to propel women past them, and towards their destiny.


  1. Well said, Erica! Valuable lessons always for me in this story. Thank you for your insight and welcome to the group.

  2. Thanks for the added perspective on the Martha story. How easy it is to think our attention is on other thing is justified. I like how you compare it to idolatry – that is really what it is! I really enjoyed your post.

  3. Erica Evans says:

    Laurie, thanks so much for the encouraging words! I’m glad you enjoyed it.

  4. Erica Evans says:

    Thanks, Cherie! I’m so glad to be a part of the Putting on the New community!

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