This is my first blog post as a WIFE. What?! I still can’t believe two weeks ago I walked down the aisle to Kari Jobe’s Revelation Song and met my husband at the end of the long walk from Big Spring Farm’s barn to the peninsula on the spring under the canopy of trees sheltering us from the rain. I just remember feeling like I was in a dream our entire ceremony and completely feeling like I was walking on air. The most surreal, heavenly moment of my life happened as I was coming down the aisle and that’s a story I’ll have to tell soon! It’s tempting to just dive right in to sharing everything about the wedding day, but to be honest, that’s not what God has put on my heart lately… and I don’t think it’s what He wants me to blog about on this first Monday in my new home as a new wife. I think He wants me to remind myself what love looks like in this new season when it comes to balancing my new duties as a spouse and my desire to have a “pretty,” perfectly presentable life.
More than once over the past few weeks, I’ve heard this little voice say in my head, “You’re being a Martha. Stop. Be a Mary.” As a woman, it can often feel like I need to put on a bit of show in order to be accepted, admired, or whatever it is I’m seeking from other people that day to supply my validation that I’m “good enough.” I’ve never been a wife before, and often it seems like the loudest example in my life of what “being a wife” looks like comes from the world of social media.
It has such a demanding presence in our lives, doesn’t it? It isn’t just a hobby anymore… it’s an industry! A monstrous one at that!! I’ve built a business on the backbone of social media and it can be a LOT of fun. But it’s also played a huge role in setting unrealistic expectations for myself and my future. For example… I can’t tell you how many Pinterest boards I have put together dreaming of what my life would look like when I became a wife. Apparently I thought I was going to be baking gourmet meals every night, completing an in-home fitness routine every morning, staying perfectly organized with my printables in my perfectly clean, light, airy office and wearing designer clothes while out on my errands. HAHA. Do you know what my life is going to look like today???
It looks like literally crawling over our suitcases and dozens and dozens of boxes of our stuff just to traverse the 10 feet from our front door to our bedroom… wedding gifts that haven’t been opened yet, clothing spilling out from the top and bottom of containers, random towels, dish racks, shoes, and leftover wedding paraphernalia. Everywhere. It is a MESS. The absolute definition of a mess. And just imagine standing in the middle of all of this, looking at the aftermath of our very first move and still trying to mentally recover from planning and paying for the biggest event of our lives… and receiving texts that ask for pictures of our how nicely our place is decorated. LOL. Please laugh with me at that image!!!
And this is when I start to hear the voice that reminds me to be a Mary and not a Martha. You see… when Jesus came to speak in Martha’s home, she was like most of us would be. I know Pinterest didn’t exist two thousand years ago, but reputations did… and so did egos. Martha had this famous religious leader in her living room and tons of people sitting around listening to him teach and what was she doing? Naturally, she was running around like a crazy person trying to make sure everything was clean, presentable, that everyone had food, a drink nearby, pillow fluffed, floor sweeped, surfaces clean… you can probably guess who asked her to stop what she was doing and just BE in the moment, enjoy the company of the people around her, and soak in every word she could… like Mary was. While Martha was running around trying to be the best host she could be, Mary was sitting at the feet of Jesus, savoring every second, and all Martha could think was… I need to get this dinner ready to serve!!!! What she THOUGHT was important was how good of a host she could be… and hopefully, her intentions were solely selfless and just wanting to serve. But something tells me – judging by the way Jesus responded to her when she got upset that Mary wasn’t helping her with dinner prep – that she was probably a little too concerned with how she appeared to people.
38 As Jesus and the disciples continued on their way to Jerusalem, they came to a certain village where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39 Her sister, Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught. 40 But Martha was distracted by the big dinner she was preparing. She came to Jesus and said, “Lord, doesn’t it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me.”
41 But the Lord said to her, “My dear Martha, you are worried and upset over all these details! 42 There is only one thing worth being concerned about. Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her.”
There isn’t a single soul in this world who knows what Martha’s home looked like. How clean it was. What kind of decor she had. How the food tasted and how spotless the floors were. Even one thousand, nine hundred years ago there wasn’t a single soul in the world who knew those things! It’s because those things really don’t matter!!! They can be fun, they can make us feel good, but in the grand scheme of things, if I’m going to turn down face-to-face time with someone and tell them they can’t stop by and say hi because I’m afraid of being embarrassed or judged for what our place looks like… that’s really sad!!
I can’t tell you how many more moments outside of just getting my apartment in order that I’ve been tempted to be more focused on having things “perfect” than just BEING. When prepping for the wedding, I am so glad God called me out on the moments I was too busy trying to get things to match my standard of “good enough” and remind me to just be still. You know what I did the night before we left for our wedding? Played Toontown with my sisters!!! It was only for an hour because I was so busy getting things in order beforehand… and I don’t remember any of the preparations at all. I remember spending time with my sisters and I wish I had had more of THAT… not the running around and getting things in order!! Because my time with them was the only thing that really mattered that day and it’s the only thing that mattered all weekend. I don’t remember any sort of logistics on our wedding day… I just remember faces, hugs, smiles, tears, and words shared. And for that I am so thankful.
So now I get to remember that as we start this new season of our lives. That the moments I’m going to remember decades from now will be evenings spent watching Game of Thrones curled up on the couch with Justin and a glass of wine… and nights around our tiny hand-me-down dining room table with mismatch chairs sharing laughs and making memories with our friends. You probably won’t see a “grand reveal” blog post of our apartment because I want people to come here and see it in real life and not on a screen. I want real life memories made here and I want it to be a place of peace, warmth and comfort for everyone who walks through the door… and I don’t think it has to be perfectly clean, styled, and decorated to be that! I know my house definitely wasn’t any of those things growing up and I never knew the difference :)
So as I wake up in my crazy messy one bedroom apartment that has one square foot of exposed carpet and still kinda smells like kitchen cabinet lacquer… I’m embracing the Mary in me and remembering to put what matters first. People. Memories. Love. And if it never reaches even half of Pinterest-worthy status, I’ll be happy as long as we fill it with beautiful times with wonderful friends in a home that’s built on Jesus. Because in the end, that’s all that truly matters.