It’s a haunting notion, that God knows us inside and out. He can “discern [our] thoughts from afar” as the Psalmist tell us. He is even “acquainted with all [our] ways.” !!! Even our loved ones in life don’t really know us the way God does. Even our own mothers and fathers whose genetic material we share. Even those who raised us, were raised around us, sharing our every waking breathing fighting moment.
I’m a mother. I’ve carried three babies inside me. I’ve felt their bones knitting together inside my womb. I’ve felt their hiccups and their kicks. I felt their journey out of me, and watched them take their first breaths. But even so, I’m a vessel. I’m not the creator. I’m not the maker. I’m not the knitter. Although I am a knitter. Hoping for really great lessons in Heaven, God. But back to the point. Even as their mom I am not their beginning nor their end–despite my being the last word on when bedtime commences.
God is the ultimate knower and lover of us. God is our Alpha & Omega. He’s it, people. He is the only one who can really say to us, like He says to Martha, while you’re freaking out and cleaning in an OCD fashion, because goodness knows there’s a lot of bacteria around here in 31 AD, that’s not who Mary is. I know who she is, and she has chosen to be my listener right now. Don’t try to take that away from her. Don’t try to change her.
I always saw this reading as a “Don’t bustle about, remember to just sit and be fully present.” But upon viewing it with the Psalm, I feel like it’s also saying, God knows you. He knit you in the womb. Martha should respect who her sister is and appreciate her for her because God does. Even if she thinks she’s being lazy (like I would if it were me with whatever kind of swiffer they used back then).
Who am I not letting be the person God knit them to be? Who am I trying to control and shape for my purposes, instead of letting them serve God’s as He sees fit, acting on her heart? Who do I need to let go of and love even if I don’t understand them fully?
Nell O’Leary is an attorney turned stay-at-home mom to three lovelies. She and her husband live in the great city of Saint Paul. You can find out more about her here.