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. Luke 10:38-42
16th SUNDAY Ordinary Time Cycle C
There was an old lady waiting at the edge of the sidewalk. Thinking that she wanted to cross the busy street, a boy scout immediately took her by the hand and led her quickly across. But upon reaching the other side the old lady screamed at the young lad “What did you do? I didn’t want to cross the street at all!”
Sometimes we get impulsive and act immediately without much thinking. We often forget to ask people what they want. At once we work but fail at listening to what they really need.
Martha thought by preparing a meal she was giving what Jesus wanted. She failed to listen to Jesus which her sister Mary did from the start. She even asked Jesus to tell Mary to stop listening and help her. Jesus had to tell her “Only one thing is needed which is to listen to me. That is what you also ought to do.”
Welcoming guests is something good. In fact, that is what Abraham and Sara did. They prepared a warm meal for the three men who brought the good news of Sarah’s unexpected pregnancy.
Mary has chosen the better part. But that does not mean Martha is doing something bad. Martha was still doing something good. Jesus did not stop her from finishing her tasks.
In life we need to do both: a) to listen and b) to act. Although listening is a priority, it must be followed by action which is also important. Acting without listening and listening without acting are both bad. Religious in fact have tried to live this being contemplatives in action.
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