Reflections of Scripture Sixteenth Sunday Ordinary Time Gospel C

By 11:56 AM

Jesus entered a village where a woman whose name was Martha welcomed him. She had a sister named Mary who sat beside the Lord at his feet listening to him speak.

Martha, Mary and Lazarus lived in Bethany which was near Jerusalem. Jesus preferred to stay there rather than in Jerusalem.Martha, burdened with much serving, came to him and said, "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me by myself to do the serving? Tell her to help me."  Mary was sitting at the feet of Jesus, listening and learning from him, like a disciple. Martha was busy with the task of preparing food for Jesus and his disciples.
Maybe there was a sense of jealousy on the part of Martha.
The Lord said to her in reply, "Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her." Jesus is not saying that Martha is not doing the right thing, but that she is anxious and worried rather than at peace with the good she was doing.
On the other hand, Mary is at peace with what she is doing.
Here we have the tension between the contemplative life (Mary) and the active life. (Martha). Both are part of the life of the disciple of Jesus and neither should be neglected.
However, Jesus indicates that contemplation is higher than the busyness of life. But even a contemplative person needs to work to provide for their needs.   
How much time do we spend at the feet of Jesus, listening to him? Maybe this week we can try to incorporate this more in our life of activity.

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