Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Coming Out (of my Mary closet)

I started attending this moms’ Bible study at church this week. It’s a great chance to spend time with some other adults and be able to have conversation while not having to chase around a child between sentences. We’re reading the book, Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, and we started our time together with the obvious question, “Who feels like Martha?” Hands shot up all around me, and women nodded their heads fervently.

Hmm.

My hand stayed uncomfortably at my side and my mouth stayed shut.

The women also voiced their annoyance at the Mary’s of the world.

Shoot, don’t make eye contact, don’t make eye contact…you don’t want to have to lie in a bible study…

See, there’s nothing in me that screams Martha, and frankly, I wouldn’t peg most of my friends as Martha’s either. I sat there trying to figure out why this was. I have friends that certainly have the Martha personality but not the Martha complex. Somewhere in the course of the discussion I think I figured out what the difference is. While looking at the church, there’s such a difference between women that have been raised in the modern era and those that are products of the postmodern era. I guess I would classify my generation as all those within five or six years of my twenty-seven years. Here’s what I mean: the women of the previous generation were raised in a very performance oriented environment. Modernity praised efficiency. Proverbs 31 praises efficiency. The women of that generation REALLY took that to heart, and as one woman confessed yesterday, “It’s a pride thing.” Women want to appear to have it all together. As much as women may want a Mary heart, many quite openly thought Martha was in the right and were annoyed by Mary.

Now take my generation. We’ve given up on the idea of being the perfect wife and the perfect mother. We’d rather just be human. In fact, those perfect women annoy us. It’s great that you can make your homemade apple pie while juggling your laundry and driving three kids to various places- all with a smile on your face, but come on, get real. We don’t want you to make us a five course meal if it’s going to stress you out; order a pizza and throw in some no-bakes and we’re perfectly happy. We don’t want you rushing around serving us- that just makes us nervous. We want you sitting and talking with us. We were bred as relational to the core, and if you’re not going to be real with us, we don’t really want to be around you. Of course, my generation has our own set of issues, but this just isn’t one of them. I just finished reading chapter two though- now THAT I can relate to- and I seriously do look forward to getting to know all these crazy Martha's too. I mean, it's only been one week and I already have a recipe to make my own laundry detergent that does 900 loads! Maybe I will become SuperMommaWife...

4 comments:

Anna said...

This is so interesting and true! I'm glad you're back blogging!

RyanLaurenAbby said...

I am soooo happy you are back to blogging... I love reading your thoughts... I wish I was a writer!!! Call you later... boy or girl????

Libby said...

Hello, am I not your friend? My instinct is to say I err on the martha side. But either way, great post. PS - I reeeeally want that laundy detergent recipe, haha. No seriously, that sounds awesome.

Kelly said...

Lib- you clearly did not read carefully. I said that I do have Martha friends- but they have the Martha personality without the complex. I think that pretty accurately describes you, don't you think?