The New Perspective on Mary and Martha
The New Perspective on Mary and Martha gives Mary and Martha a total makeover. No longer is this familiar passage about prioritizing spiritual pursuits over the tyranny of the practical. The results of a close reading of the text and careful exegesis of the Greek has Martha escaping the kitchen and Mary is not even in the house! Martha is still overly worried, not about housework, but over the much more understandable concern about her (younger) sister. Mary, who is out of the village, follows her call, ministering on the road with Jesus. Luke 10:38-42 is about discipleship, ministry, trust, and the new family of Jesus.
Bold Girls Speak: Girls of the Bible Come Alive Today
I have a deep concern for the healthy development of youth today. Both girls and boys are bombarded with an overwhelming number of unhealthy messages in advertising, movies, and social networking. I am particularly alarmed at the pressures faced by young women and the lack of good resources to help them.
The choice from among secular books includes fiction about vampire boyfriends and a barrage of sexually explicit and violent novels. Christian literature is bland, not bold, and reinforces female passivity and promotes physical attractiveness. These stories encourage Christian girls to strengthen their power to effect change and develop leadershipskills.
The ten short stories in Bold Girls Speak offer girls biblical examples of problem-solving girls. These characters have been uprooted from their homes and they are challenged to adapt and survive using non-traditional skills. The action-packed plots serve as examples to modern young women, but at the same time take the readers to biblical times and places.
Bold Girls Speak inspires girls to go boldly where God calls. This collection of Old and New Testament short stories follows smart, problem-solving girls who persevere and thrive with God’s help in difficult circumstances. Most are unnamed and overlooked, living in a foreign culture, but the small ones can make a big difference. A few of the main characters are well known and named, but most are found in tucked-away verses in the shadows of the powerful. The girls live in historical and social-cultural settings authentic to the Bible, and they increase the reader’s curiosity about biblical times and places. Each story is accompanied by age-appropriate commentary and discussion questions appropriate for classes, mother-daughter groups, home-schoolers, and Christian schools, as well as those reading for enjoyment.
The illustrator for Bold Girls Speak is Lisa Guinther, BA Philosophy U of Colorado, who can actually explain philosophy in such a way that anyone can understand it. She also has studied art which she practices in paintings, sketches, and photographs as a balance to her writing in philosophy.
“Recently, as I was listening to a Christian radio station, the female announcer shared that she was feeling guilty about her busy life. She made reference to the biblical “story of Mary and Martha,” typically feeling at fault because she was not taking ample time to “sit at Jesus’ feet” properly. She went on to say that Martha had it wrong because she was more concerned about her chores than she was about being in the presence of the Lord. These two sisters are examples, one positive and one negative.
I drew a deep breath. My first reaction was shock at the self- reproach expressed, and then I was horrified to realize that a multitude of women were listening to the radio station, as I was, and were exposed to this inadequate and potentially damaging interpretation of a “familiar” New Testament story.” Read More…