The Pirates are in a slump. Last night Manager Clint Hurdle was asked if he “took the losses home with him.” Hurdle said no, or at least, not nearly as much as he used to. He said he had a wife and kids at home who needed him to be present for them. When he got to the ballpark in the morning, it was “game on,” but he always remembered his family at home.
Clint Hurdle is a committed Christian who credits faith with not only turning his life around, but saving it from alcoholism. Like many of us, Hurdle works in a profession that can be all consuming. If you don’t drive yourself to distraction (or worse), others will. The commentators on the sports talk show this morning were questioning Hurdle’s commitment to winning.
But the Christian faith has a lot to teach us about this. Jesus was a guest in the home of his friends Martha and Mary. Mary was doing what disciples do; she sat at Jesus’ feet to learn. This irritated Martha, who demanded that Jesus tell Mary to help in the kitchen.
Now, disciples do need to sit at Jesus feet. And it is important to show hospitality to a guest. Jesus talked about serving others all the time. One of the last things he did was host his own disciples for a meal.
Martha’s problem was not in the overwork, but in expecting Jesus to ratify her agenda for how her life was supposed to go. We can get so distracted by what we’re doing, we think the busyness is the point. Martha didn’t know it, but Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem to die. She would never get to be with the Lord in such a personal way again.
So how do we know what to do in the moment?
There’s no rule to tell you how to handle every situation, but the more you assume the posture of a disciple, at the feet of the master, the more likely you are to get it right.