Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.”
But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations
Summer days offer fine opportunities to welcome family and good friends to our backyard for a barbecue or perhaps a more festive birthday feast. Even a simple meal involves a good bit of preparation which eats away at the time I want to spend sharing with guests. How do I manage both?
Today we meet Martha and Mary, sisters of Lazarus and dear friends of Jesus. These two good women can be viewed as polarities for “doing good works” and/or simply “being in God’s presence.” They also offer us practical lessons in hospitality that necessarily engages both our hands and our hearts.
The hospitality of Abraham and Sarah in today’s first reading offers a parallel image of gracious welcome and care towards three strangers who show up at their tent. After Sarah prepares and serves them a sumptuous feast, one of the strangers tells the couple that Sarah will give birth to a son. Quite an amazing reward for notable hospitality towards total strangers!
—The Jesuit Prayer Team
Lord, we pray that we listen to the priorities that you place in our hearts. Too often we get distracted and pulled away by the urgencies of the moment that are but the shadow of the truly important facets of our lives. Let your Spirit beckon us closer, ever closer to you so we can give time to that which really matters.
—The Jesuit Prayer TeamPlease share the Good Word with your friends!