God loves us the way we are

The Sunday Guardian - - & COMMENT ANALYSIS - By Rev. Dr. Richard How­ell

Emma was not al­ways con­tent with the tal­ents God had given her. How­ever, read­ing the fam­ily story of Mary, Martha and Lazarus (Luke 10:38-42.) trans­formed her life.

The three young peo­ple were friends of the Lord Je­sus and lived in a town near Jeri­cho. Martha was a hos­pitable woman, who took charge of the com­forts of home and hearth. She poured her en­ergy into serv­ing house­guests, en­sur­ing that the fam­ily was fed and com­fort­able. Martha’s per­son­al­ity was of a doer. She was a ca­pa­ble young woman who was prac­ti­cal and took charge of the fam­ily with­out be­ing told.

In con­trast, her sis­ter Mary ap­peared to be a thinker. She was in­ter­ested in ideas. When the Lord Je­sus vis­ited their home, Mary would spend time sit­ting at Je­sus’ feet ab­sorb­ing His teach­ing—which was un­usual for a woman in those days. Mary opened her mind and heart to what Je­sus taught. Much to Martha’s dis­may, Mary was of no help when the Lord Je­sus and his dis­ci­ples en­tered their home as her only de­sire was to lis­ten and learn from Him. Emma learnt that both these women spent their time and en­ergy dif­fer­ently be­cause they had unique per­son­al­i­ties, strengths, and gifts. They ex­pressed their love for Je­sus in dif­fer­ent ways. Yet both Martha and Mary rec­og­nized that the Lord Je­sus had power to heal and an­swer prayers.

When their brother Lazarus be­came sick they sent a mes­sage to Je­sus ask­ing him to come. Je­sus came four days too late. Martha on see­ing Je­sus said, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you what­ever you ask of Him.” Je­sus raised Lazarus from the dead.

Emma learnt that in spite of their dif­fer­ences in per­son­al­ity, Je­sus un­con­di­tion­ally ac­cepted and loved Martha, Mary and Lazarus for who they were. Je­sus in­ter­acted with them dif­fer­ently. In in­ti­macy with God we begin to love our­selves the way we are.

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