Jesus is on his way toward Jerusalem. In yesterday's reading he had a discussion with a self-justifying lawyer, to whom he defined who are our neighbors. Today he is at Martha and Mary's house. Martha is slaving away getting the meal prepared and making sure everything else is going smoothly, bustling about, busy, busy, busy. And she sees her sister, Mary, sitting at the feet of Jesus, just listening to what he was saying.
Well, I've had enough of that from her! Martha says to herself. And saying to Jesus, Can't you do something about her? I'm killing myself here and she won't lift a finger!
Mary ignores her sister. And Jesus looks at Martha and says, Oh Martha. Don't you know where I am going and to what I am heading? I know you know who I am. Stop worrying about what we are going to eat, or if the place is clean. Come sit with me while you can.
Our Gospel reading is modeling for us today the concept of paying attention to, and doing, those important things in life, and letting go of the distractions we create for ourselves. Living in, helping to effectuate the creation of the kingdom, here and now.....the one that Jesus opens for us, is that to which we need to direct our attention and efforts......Perhaps it is as simple as being present, really present, to a loved one today, listening to them, being with them....Perhaps it is stopping to help someone we pass on the street who is obviously in need of assistance, and giving them a few moments of our time to help them on their way.....There are a myriad of things we can do today to help make Jesus' kingdom a reality.....provided we don't allow those things we create, those things we believe are important (and really aren't) to get in the way.
Copyright 2011, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo: Sunset, 2010, Courtesy of MH Jarvis.