Saturday, July 20, 2013

A Balancing Act, Two Sisters Dream Interpretation

The reason I’m thinking about Mary and Martha is because in a recent dream I was present with another woman who seems very much a Martha-type figure to me. She is always there, always helpful, has all the details at her fingertips. It's a good way to be. But when I say 'Martha' I mean the Martha in the Bible that complained that her sister was not helping get dinner ready. In the dream, I and the other woman were both sitting at the feet of a respected person who said to us, ‘My beautiful ladies.’ It was said in a very kind and appreciative way. It reminded me immediately of the biblical story of Mary the listener and Martha the worker-bee.

Martha, the Worker Bee

Now I’m a big fan of worker-bee’s –  it’s alot of work making the world turn. Martha is absolutely part of daily living, but not everything we can be. In this story Mary and Martha are conveniently divided between two separate people, but I think both Mary and Martha live in us. Both are valued and beautiful, both sustain us. But let's not play favorites. They balance and complement one another. It's a Christian yin and yang thing, requiring balance of energy and effort.

picture of a bee gathering nector
A Busy Bee
Martha, if you remember, was very concerned about her guest. She was buried in the preparations and her sister wouldn’t help! Her sister, Mary, was content to listen and enjoy the company. Jesus said she chose the better part. How often do we miss the fun, enjoyment and opportunity to learn because we want things to be perfect? We plan, work and schedule ourselves to success. It makes us tired, cranky and jealous of others.

Seeking Out Mary

But what about when we find ourselves confused, anxious, empty? That is when we need to tap into our inner Mary, the one who listens attentively for hours on end, and focuses on the bigger spiritual picture, tuning out all distractions. That means carving out some time - whether it means leaving a  things undone, declining invitations, or getting up early.

How else can we balance out Martha, except with Mary? We weren’t created just to work and get a lot done. We are created to find God, learn to follow the Spirit, find and live out our own callings. Letting go of the activities and busy-ness can seem selfish or impractical. And maybe the people around us don't get it. I like to explain that I need time out. But instead of it being a punishment, it’s the time I cherish the most.

Time Out to do What?

Meditate, listen, pray
Paint or draw
Interpret your dreams
Walk and enjoy nature
Think a little (not too much)
Read on an interesting subject or person
Just be myself
Other things that renew your spirit

The time we spend with ourselves is time for renewal, change, learning, and listing to life's messages. It can be a source of strength and bring a renewal of faith, or the courage to change our lives. It really is the better choice.

It's a little like the two women in 'Beaches,' a friendship of balance and beauty. Only we have both those personalities within us all and they both need encouragement and space to grow.

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