Top 10 Quotes on Having a Mary Heart

havingamaryheartinamarthworld

I struggle with balance.  I think I may have multiple personalities.  My pendulum swings from completely lazy to frantically busy.  Somewhere in the middle, there must be a happy medium.   That’s why I read Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World by Joanna Weaver.  I was hoping she would show me how to sit at Jesus’ feet but still have a clean house.

Here are my top 10 quotes from this fantastic book on cultivating a joyful life of intimacy and service:

1.  “When we put work before worship, we put the cart before the horse.  The cart is important; so is the horse.  But the horse must come first, or we end up pulling the cart ourselves.  Frustrated and weary, we can nearly break under the pressure of service, for there is always something that needs to be done.  When we first spend time in His presence–when we take time to hear His voice–God provides the horsepower we need to pull the heaviest load.  He saddles up Grace and invites us to take a ride.”  p. 10

2. “The only requirement for a deeper friendship with God is showing up with a heart open and ready to receive.”  p. 11

3.  “He knows the journey is difficult.  He knows life is rarely fair.  Jesus fought the same frigid winds of distraction, discouragement, and doubt that keep us from knowing God’s love.  But like the Father, He longs to gather us in His arms.  He longs to trade the flimsy blankets of our own self-sufficiency for His all-sufficiency.  The Lord Jesus invites us to cast our doubts, our fears, and anxiety upon Him, to discover how much He really does care.  Trust Me, My child, He whispers.  I have your ultimate good in mind.”  p. 29

4.  “So often we give God the gift we think He needs rather than take the time to find out what He desires.” p. 56

5.  “The thing we need to understand is that God did not choose to ‘use’ us.  We are not spiritual Oompa-Loopmas in some cosmic chocolate factory working day and night to churn out a smoother, better-tasting Christianity.  We were not created to fill some egotistical need God has for praise — the angels forever encircle His throne with worship.  We are not some celestial science project; laboratory mice let loose to see how they interact.  No, the Bible makes it clear that God created us because He longs to have fellowship with us.  Our Father longs to pour His very life into us, to give us an inheritance and a share in His divine nature.  What does God desire?  It is actually very simple.  He wants you.  All of you.”  p. 62

6.  “Make no mistake.  Satan enjoys using our hectic schedules, stressed bodies, and emotional upsets in his efforts to put up barriers to our intimacy with God.  That’s why we need to take a close look at any thought, feeling, or activity that diminishes our appetite for intimacy with God.”  p. 69

7.  “Does it sound harsh to say that cooking or cleaning or taking care of your children or doing your job might be sinful?  But think about it.  The very definition of sin is separation from God.  So no matter how important the activity, no matter how good it seems, if I use it as an excuse to hold God at arm’s length, it is sin.”  p. 105

8. “Waiting four days may have made Jesus a late for a healing, but it made Him right on time for a resurrection.  So never put a period where God puts a comma.  Just when you think the sentence is over, the most important part may be yet to come.”  p. 127

9.  “Until we determine whom we will serve, we run the risk of developing a Judas heart instead of a heart of sacrificial love.  For whenever our interests conflict with His interests, we’ll be tempted to sell Christ off as a slave to the highest bidder, rather than spend our all to anoint His feet.”  p. 164

10.  “The secret of balancing worship and work, devotion and service, love of God and love of people is maintaining our connection to Jesus Christ.  Our relationship with Him is the fulcrum, the anchor, the steadying point that makes balance possible in the first place.  And the deeper that relationship goes, the more stable the balance will be.”  p. 190

Q4U:  Do you have multiple personalities like me? How do you find balance between your Mary and your Martha?

If you are book nerd like me, jump on over here to see more posts about great books I have read.

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Photo Credit:  Joanna Weaver Books

Lessons Learned in 3D — The Soap Box

Over the last few days, I climbed up on my soap box once to many times.  Do you ever rant uncontrollably?  This week, I did.  Not pretty.

I know why I am striving and not resting — I rushed my mornings and my quiet time.  My spirit is sounding an alarm.

So, tonight while my husband is working late, I am slowing down and taking time to reflect and remember.

Here in no particular order are 10 things that this crazy girl learned this week:

1.  Shauna Niequist’s blueberry crisp is even better for breakfast.  Have you read Bread and Wine: A Love Letter to Life Around the Table with Recipes?  I love the Shauna’s passion for community:

“When you offer peace instead of division,

when you offer faith instead of fear,

when you offer someone a place at your table

instead of keeping them out

because they’re different

or messy or somehow wrong,

you represent the heart of Christ” (p. 250).  

2.   On the subject of blueberries, I loved how God used them to speak to Sarah about brokenness and redemption:

“Each one of us has fallen out of the door,

so to speak, and instead of a wide sweep

and an I’m-done-with-you,

we’ve been picked up carefully.

Chosen, even.

And we’ve gently been made okay again.”

3.  I am fleshy.   Erin Davis shared this “Fleshy Assessment” over at True Woman, and I found was convicted after reflecting on the questions she posed.

4.  Church should be “a big, wacky family.”  Jamie says it so beautifully in her post for A Deeper Church.

5.   I need to focus on the positive, rather than whining.  Michelle’s personal story reminded me this week:

“What we’d assumed was harmless complaining

was actually fueling an undercurrent

of negativity and discontent in our marriages.”

6.  “Renaming our fears, and reclaiming our courage, takes away the power of unseen monsters.”  — Jennifer taught me 3 step to remove fear. 

7.    “Pretend your boss is Jesus.”  — These words from my pastor about Colossians 3:23 hit me hard this week.  (Check out the whole sermon on Ecclesiastes 1 here.)

8.  I  need to meditate on Ephesians 3:20 more regularly.  Elizabeth at Just Following Jesus reminded me that He is able to take care of those I love.”

9.  “He’s got you and this week and the next one” — I loved this end of the week reminder by Lisa Jo for (in) courage.  It refreshed my spirit at the end of a long week.

10.  80’s TV Sitcoms were the best.  This week, my husband was channel surfing, and we came across a gem — A Laverne and Shirley episode where Lenny and Squiggy go on The Dating Show.  So funny!  I could not find an episode clip for you on You Tube (bummer!), but I did discover the meaning of “Schlemiel! Schlimazel! Hasenpfeffer Incorporated.”  It’s a Yiddish-American hopscotch chant.  “Schlemiel” is a clumsy person, and “Schlimazel” is an unlucky person.  “Hesenpfeffer” is a type of stew.  So, the “Schlemiel” drops the “Hesenpfeffer,” and it lands on the “Schlimazel,”  or something like that… 🙂

Q4U:  What did you learn this week?
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I am joining Jesse and friends this weekend for



A Song in the Night

Christian Friendship

Her husband was working an all-day shift with the fire department and would not be home until morning.  The baby was sick and had started vomiting.    I grabbed my purse, jumped in the car, and drove in her direction quickly as we discussed the doctor’s instructions via cell phone.   All would be well, I assured her.  I am coming.

Two hours later, the doctor at the urgent care center informed us that Samantha was dehydrated and would need to spend the night in the hospital.  I drove behind the ambulance that held my friend and her tiny treasure.  All will be well, I assured her.  I am staying with you.

Her three-month old was placed in a crib with bars that looked like a tiny prison.   In hopes of keeping Barby from unraveling, I started talking about the 80’s — campy B-rated movies, heart-throbs with mullets, and songs with memorable lyrics.  We started singing Air Supply and Pat Benatar tunes as we sat in the dark room watching the baby sleep.  We sang and laughed and cried all night.

That night in the hospital room twelve years ago cemented our friendship.

We share a mutual love of chocolate, french cafes, and Beth Moore Bible studies.   We torture each other by sharing dysfunctional family stories.  We have staked our claim to sit in comfy spots on each other’s couches.

She makes the best french toast — and shares the recipe.

She stood beside me when I married the husband she had prayed for God to send me.

She washed my hair when I was too sick to do it myself.

She has stayed with me through many a night season.

….

Some nights my husband goes to bed early, and I stubbornly stay up.  I sit on the couch with my laptop and eventually I drift off to oblivion.  Usually, about 2 AM I will wake up in a stupor.  I am too groggy to get up off the couch, so I sit there in the silence trying to wake up.  There in the quiet I often hear her — the bird perched in the giant tree in our side yard is keeping me company.  And, she is singing the sweetest tune.   What kind of bird sings a song in the night?

I know now that she is a friend.

All will be well, my friend.  All will be well.

A friend is always loyal,

and a brother is born to help in time of need. (Proverbs 17:17, NLT)

Q4U:  Do you have a friend who sings in the night with you?  How has Christian friendship carried you through a dark season?  I would love to hear your story.

I am passionate about the power of friendship and community and write about it often — Head on over here to read some more about the power of “girl time” and chocolate.  🙂

Thanks for stopping by!  I would love to connect with you on FacebookTwitter, or Pinterest.

Joining like-minded sisters today at (in) courage,  Thought-Provoking Thursday Faith-Filled Friday, Tell His Story, Soli Deo Gloria, Hear it on Sunday: Use it on Monday and Playdates with God.

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Photo Credit:  Juha Soininen