Approximately five children sneezed on me last week.
Consequently my throat decided to begin birthing knives on Thursday afternoon. Having fought through The Worst Flu Strain In History this past Christmas, then being hit by The Worst Cold In History three days later, I thought I had developed an ironclad immunity to this winter's germs. False.
I don't blame the children. In fact, I love children, so much so that yesterday I spent ten minutes on the phone with my 2-year-old nephew making duck noises (total riot, btw). When you're that young you've got a tough enough job figuring out how to pronounce consonants properly while walking at the same time, never mind trying to politely direct sneezes away from nearby adults.
But the fact remains -- I caught a cold. A nasty gland-swelling headache cold. Over the weekend, too. Just in time for Wayne to be home, not at school, able to spend time with his wife. His miserable sick wife. Who, despite being told numerous times to take it easy, did not. Because taking it easy would clearly mean that the sick miserable wife is weak and useless. And everyone knows that cleaning the house and doing laundry and washing dishes is the perfect remedy to clear up an exhausting cold virus.
There's probably a moral to this story.
Instead of listening to my husband and taking it easy, I let my pride take over and told myself that I couldn't just sit around and let my body heal (obviously a total waste of time), I had to do something worthwhile. Basically, I wanted to feel good about myself. I was feeding my pride.
Unfortunately this is a story that has played out many times in my life. I have every variation of the Martha Complex (see Luke 10:38-42), and though my particular example isn't a replica of Martha's story, the heart of it is present. In his devotional Morning and Evening, Charles Spurgeon writes that Martha's problem wasn't that she was over-serving -- it was that she was distracted by much serving. She forgot about Jesus and focused on her work, allowing it to override her communion with him. Pride was astir.
Wayne told me to take it easy because he knew it was best for me and my health. Jesus told Martha to take it easy because communing with him was the best for her and her spiritual health. With all this wisdom available to me, you'd think I'd have learned my lesson by now. Not quite. But with the great grace of Jesus, I pray that one day I'll figure it out.
And no, Wayne, I was not equating you with Jesus. Just fyi.