The Martha Complex
(or "The Service Trap")
- This account in the life of
our Lord Jesus Christ is about something right becoming wrong-good
intentions becoming bad intentions.
- Here is a contrast between
the worker and the worshiper.
- Mary is mentioned three times
in the Bible-Each time she is at the feet of Jesus: John 11:32-
She shares her woe; John 12:3- She spends her worship; Luke 10:39-
She soaks in His Word
- Martha is SUPER-SERVANT.
- Sometimes service can seem
like a trap. You feel trapped in a particular ministry. Serving
can wear on you (Gal. 6:9).
- NOT AN EITHER/OR SITUATION.
God wants us to work and worship. It is a matter of perspective
- Mary is enjoying her time
with Jesus. Jesus was interesting to listen to.
- Martha was not having a good
time. She was irritated. Why?
I. Her PRIORITIES were DISPLACED - Her work became more important than her Lord.
II. Her PURPOSE was DISLOCATED - What began as a way to serve Jesus slowly became a way to serve self.
A. Martha became more concerned about pleasing self than pleasing God.
B. She even got in Jesus' face and began to boss Him (God) around (v.40).
III. Her PERSPECTIVE was DISILLUSIONED. Satan will not take away your ministry, but create disillusion in your ministry.
- A. Satan didn't take Martha
out of the kitchen. He just took away her purpose for being in
- She forgot that the meal was
to honor Jesus, not herself.
- If Satan can't get you out
of the church, he'll disillusion you in church.
B. Satan will get you to focus on what others are doing (or not doing) instead of what you are doing.
What Martha was doing was not wrong- The problem was she was
doing it with a wrong spirit.
Lord of all pots and pans and
thing, since I've no time to be
A saint by doing lovely things, or watching late with Thee,
Or dreaming in the dawn light, or storming heaven's gates-
Make me a saint by getting meals and washing up the plates.
Although I must have Martha's hands, I have a Mary's mind;
And when I black the boots and shoes, Thy sandals, Lord, I find-
I think of how they trod the earth, what time I scrub the floor;
Accept this meditation, Lord, I wish I could give you more.
Warm all the kitchen with Thy love, and light it with Thy peace;
Forgive me all my worrying, and make my grumbling cease.
Thou who didst love to give men food, in room or by the sea,
Accept this service that I do- I do it unto Thee!"