The Ministry of Martha

My beloved wife’s name is Martha.  She would be upset with me if she knew I wrote this about her.  Her ministry is more than a pastor’s wife. It is truly the work of the Lord, Jesus Christ.  My wife’s name not only means “a lady”, it is a reflection of Jesus’ heart.  She is indeed the hands and feet of Christ.  Not only does she help abandoned animals, donates to the poor, gives extra time for struggling students, but she helps those abandoned by society.  For the last year or more she has taken care of a Para from the elementary school who may be living in her last days.  She has worked for over 30 years as a 4th grade teacher and she has prolonged this Para’s life or perhaps even saved it.  Let me explain.

A friend of hers, I will call her Julie, has been a Para at the elementary school where she has worked for many years.  This lady was diagnosed with an incurable form of cancer.  She had taken so many sick days to care for this lady, to run her to doctors’ appointments, to take her to chemotherapy treatments that she is about out of sick days and personal days with only half the school year gone.  Today she is sitting beside her bed in the ICU of St. Francis Hospital in Wichita, Kansas helping her with chipped ice, rearranging her pillows, finding nurses to aid her with her pain medicine.  She is exhausted yet she has sat in doctors offices, in ICU surgery waiting rooms, and in the ICU Surgery Recovery Units for hours upon hours – sometimes not arriving home till late.   And she has papers waiting for her in her classroom to grade.  She had Parent-Teacher Conference packets to make.  She had grades to enter into the computer,.  She has lesson plans for her and for the sub.   And she has work awaiting her at home.

This wife of mine is more than a friend…she is a saint of God who has missed church services to be with her friend who had no one else.  Even though about half of the teachers have promised to help escort her to the doctor and hospitals for about 48 visits this year, only one time did another teacher help her.  She alone has answered calls past midnight to console and comfort this woman.  She has left in the middle of the night to help feed her, bring her meals, pay some of her bills, buy her gift certificates, and has been the difference of life or death to her.  

A friend is as a friend does.  Many of Julie’s teacher friends and personal friends have offered help but none have actually done so.  Even her own minister has not even visited her at her home.  This fact makes me made, but not Martha.  She simply fills in the gaps.  This gift from God to me has been more than a wife.  She has been a friend, a nurse, an advisor, a counselor, and friend to the end – whenever that may be.  Stored up for her is a crown that the Lord has reserved for such woman of faith.  She has been at the same elementary, working in the same classroom of 4th grade, and worked tirelessly for any who need it, since she graduated from college.  Perhaps the greatest wife any husband could ever have – and more than I deserve – she is my beloved wife. What she has done in secret has done in plain sight in heaven.  I do not deserve such a woman as this but the Lord was gracious to me anyway.  

The ministry of Martha is more precious than rubies, more important than medicine, more saintly than most will ever know.  I am proud to call her my wife.  I know she would be embarrassed to know that I wrote this about her.  What husband is more proud, what spouse is more inspired, what work is more important? I can not compare my ministry with hers.  She far exceeds me by light years. Yet it pleased the Lord to have her be my wife.  My beloved Martha. Isn't she beautiful…on the inside and outside?  What is more precious to the Lord than this labor of love than the Ministry of Martha?

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