Friday, July 29, 2011

Martha & Mary

In reflecting on the story of Martha (Feast day: July 29) and Mary today I recall how busy Martha was when serving the Lord and how Mary sat at his feet to listen to him. Jesus responds by saying, "Mary has chosen the better portion..." Lk 10: 42

Why is it the better portion? Wasn't the Lord grateful for all that Martha was doing for him?

Of course he was, but he wants us to know that we must be about doing his will, not our own. First we must listen to know his will and then we must do as he says.

I am reminded of the need to be both of them in my life--being contemplative like Mary and active like Martha. These two women reflect the two facets of a good balanced Christian life--contemplation and action. They need to go hand and hand.

When I take time for prayer early in the morning and seek to listen, I discern things that weren't on my visible or invisible '"to do" list. This might include a variety of actions like:
  • call a specific person and touch base
  • write a thank you note
  • give an affirmation or little gift to someone
  • organize something in the house
  • pray for a relative, friend, or acquaintance
  • go to confession 
So the point is we don't want to rush anxiously into our day doing everything we think we need to without being prayerful. There is a better way, and that is to consult the Lord for his agenda, his plan, his priorities for us each morning.

Peace is found in action rooted in contemplation.

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