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Friday, January 11, 2008

Solving the World's Problems...and Some of Mine

I find myself doing the most ridicules things. Just like this morning. I woke just after 5:00 a.m. and lay there in my soft cocoon of clean sheets, soft comforter and cozy pillow and I tried to solve the world's problems before I got up....well maybe not the world's...but mine felt like the problems of the world...AND THEN I was so depressed all I wanted to do was burrow deeper into the bed....but then...I crawled out from under and decided it'd be best if God handled it today!

Ever have one of those days? When the stress of life gets too much? That's what happens with me. I battle in my mind over the issues that are pressing in on me when----if I'd just stop and think----I don't need to! I allow heaviness to overtake my heart, and then I'm a mess for days and by the time I finally realize that the place I need to be is at the feet of the Father...I am crumpled in a heap. I need to be wearing Mary's shoes. Not Martha's.

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 is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:40-42 NIV

Mary's feet led her to the Lord. Martha's feet led her to the kitchen sink. Back and forth from the stove to the table to the sink to the fridge to the sink to the table to the cupboard to the table to the sink to the stove ..... get the picture? Now, I am not saying that there wasn't a "need to feed". There was. There is.

But can you picture Sister Mary with me? Sweating bullets because she can't find the serving platter that matches----biting her tongue almost off because of the anger she is feeling toward Mary, until she finally "voices" it just a bit....pulling out the best linen napkins for the "company", only to find one is missing! She was out of control. Just like me. Maybe even just like you sometimes?

I know my mother gets that way when a special deal is about to take place at her house. I come by it honest. You will find me days before guests are to arrive cleaning baseboards in the bathroom for crying out loud! AND in the hall...and just in case someone looks "behind" the doors...yep---I clean there too. I am not a neat freak....until we have company. Then I totally freak out. (There---I have let my guard down and showed you the "weird me".)

As a matter of fact, on Christmas Eve we were having my whole family at my house....and there I was just a couple of hours before, finally getting around to the bathroom (saved it for last on purpose) and I was cleaning the tub and tub walls as if we were serving food in it! That is a bit much! When it was all said and done I was too pooped to party! I was exhausted and ---AND---on top of that---I messed my back up again!

So, you see, me and Sister Martha have much in common. It's not that we don't love the Lord. We do ---with all our hearts, souls, minds and spirits! But we are excessive in some areas that really don't count as much. They have no "heavenly value". They will not "grow us" spiritually. Well, one point in my favor, I DO LISTEN to praise and worship music while I work. I do talk to the Lord as I'm busy. Sister Martha may have too. I'll ask if I remember when we get to heaven.

I had a discussion with my daughter just this week about her priorities. (Like I'm such a pro at prioritizing things!) God first---then family. She had her "love life" reversed. Love God first----with all your heart-soul-mind-strength---if He is the "Leader" in the marriage then it will work. If He's not, then---hmmm, well, that is something I'm not willing to try. When we love God first---then He can show us how to love that "sometimes" unlovable spouse. The unsaved spouse. The one that puts his wants-desires-activities ahead of everything else. But only with God's help can that be done. (My opinion for what it's worth!)

What am I saying in all this jumble of words? We can't solve the world's problems. Without God---I cannot solve mine. With God in charge---loving Him first....heading straight for the throne first---instead of trying my own way----we can find the peace we need in the midst of the problems of life. That is hard.

For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. 1 Corinthians 14:33 KJV

And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7

I am thankful that I can have the "peace" I need....anytime....anywhere.

Now, before you try and solve the world's problems....make sure you have on the "right shoes" (as in Mary's shoes).

In Him,


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Blogger lori said...

I knew I liked you....BUT I had NO IDEA how much alike we thought...
till I read this.
" I was cleaning the tub and tub walls as if we were serving food in it! That is a bit much!"

OH boy, now this is a message I could say EVERYDAY!!(perhaps on the hour)
I am the prioritizer, the energizer and the Marthaizer...
sometimes I need a bit more Mary in my soul!!
Sister you tagged me, spot on!!

I'm printing this as I type...It is just so....well, ME!!

Your message is timely and your words wise!
but ultimately, the peace we need DOES come only from him...stopping and sitting still at the foot of the cross and then and only then cleaning that bathroom so people can eat in there ;)

you have a kindred spirit over here in North Georgia!
hugs to you...
you spoke to ME this morning!!
hugs to you!!

January 10, 2008 at 6:18 PM  
Blogger Amy B said...

Angie and Lori...

I am having company this weekend and I told them this was your house! Can you come clean your bathroom? :o)

Great message Angie! I defintely need to remember to walk in Mary's shoes!!

January 10, 2008 at 7:07 PM  
Blogger ChristiS said...

Boy did I need to hear this today! I have been worrying about things I have no control over, and I need to give 'em to the Lord, and work on praising Him through it all! Thank you!

January 10, 2008 at 8:49 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Oh this is so me. My husband has learned to call me before coming home with anyone with him because heaven forbid anyone know that we actually use our house to live in. I have been trying hard to let this go and it is getting better but I still have work to do on it.
What a great reminder.

January 10, 2008 at 8:55 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

"And the peace of God that passes ALL understanding". God has shown me this verse twice today! I love it. I really needed it this week. Thank you for your post. God Bless!

January 10, 2008 at 9:06 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

Awesome message, thank you.

January 11, 2008 at 4:39 AM  
Blogger Mocha with Linda said...

Excellent words. I can get myself quite worked up in the wee hours of the morning and let "doing" overcome my day. Even this morning I almost skipped this time to read this devotional because the living room's a wreck and a friend is coming over to meet about Bible Study.

Thanks for the reminder!

January 11, 2008 at 7:50 AM  
Blogger Our Own International Multiples Club said...

I need to work on giving my worries over to God, especially at 3 AM. I think I am finding that even harder than overcoming my struggles with my faith. I apprecaite your help.

January 11, 2008 at 8:51 AM  
Anonymous Cindy Swanson said...

Wow, Angie, I can really relate! I'm not normally a neat-freak either, but I go a little nuts when company's coming. Good stuff here!

January 11, 2008 at 9:13 AM  
Blogger Darnelle said...

You were right Angie. God had a little something going on with the posts from yesterday and today! Think He's trying to tell us something? (Something like . . . "Woman, relax! I got this!") I've heard that one more than once lately.
Bless ya!

January 11, 2008 at 9:22 AM  
Blogger Kelly said...

Such a great reminder--let me go check my shoes . . .

January 11, 2008 at 9:43 AM  
Blogger Cory said...

It is very hard to remember to go to God first in our busy lives. Thank you for sharing this with us. Take care and God bless, Cory

January 11, 2008 at 10:59 AM  
Blogger Leti said...

As I read this, I found myself laughing because this sounds like me. My daughter says, "O no, there goes Mom" when we will be having company. Then I got really sick where I couldn't move. With this the Lord took alot of this "perfection" in me. Then I ended up being the caregiver for my ill-mother. I could go on and on, but I will tell you that alot has changed. Still struggle with "wait, I have to clean!; I have to solve all the worlds-problems", but praise be to God whose work in me, HE will COMPLETE. Thanks for being transparent. Lord Bless.

January 11, 2008 at 12:52 PM  
Blogger windycindy said...

I tend to do that at night when I go to bed. My mind will not shut off and allow me to relax and fall asleep. Worry never changes anything, but somehow my mind won't believe it! Thanks for the good thoughts. Cindi

January 11, 2008 at 1:14 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

You struck a chord with a lot of readers, Angie!

January 11, 2008 at 1:37 PM  
Blogger marina said...

These was really good I am not a neat freak too but when company's coming I go crazy leaning and then I worry I won't clean in time b/c of my 6 year old son who leaves a trail everywhere he goes.I could have friends over plenty of tiems for tea diet coke but I don't b/c of my son's little toys everywhere ,when I could be missing out and some good fellowship! I need these too thanks, marina

January 11, 2008 at 2:31 PM  
Blogger Lynn said...


Every time I read anything you write I realize we are more and more alike. I freak out when I have company over. Probably why I don't entertain frequently.

This post is for me. I am Martha trying to be a Mary. One thing you said I love. Martha loved the Lord too. Just like us. Wonderful post. Love and hugs, Lynn

January 11, 2008 at 2:40 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

Thanks for the reminder. I know we all get a touch of Martha every now and then!

January 11, 2008 at 3:20 PM  
Blogger Living Beyond said...

THE BATH TUB - YES of course it's the MOST important thing to clean I mean what happens if somebody takes a peel behind the shower curtian while they are sitting on the loo!!! I'm so with you on this one hahahaha

Thanks for a wonderful post I look forward to reading many more of your posts!!

January 11, 2008 at 4:40 PM  
Blogger Praise and Coffee said...

Oh, I wish this didn't resemble me so much!

Finding the balance between entertaining and being can be a challenge for me.


January 12, 2008 at 9:39 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hilarious about the bathtub scrubbing! So funny! I have totally done that too. I love to present that "put together" face for company, but once they leave, my shoes come off!

Good reminder to walk at least a mile in Mary's shoes, before the Lord. Giving him our bathtub scum too. ;)

January 13, 2008 at 3:35 AM  

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