Last week I wrote about putting love into action, meaning how are we living our faith as disciples? What does it mean to be a disciple? Clearly, being a disciple is something intentional not accidental. When we were baptized, we celebrated the reality that we are God’s daughters and sons, called to respond to God’s eternal merciful love by putting our faith into action.
Today we hear how Martha and Mary are also disciples and we hear two different facets of discipleship. Jesus recognizes it takes focus to be a disciple and a great deal of trust. Otherwise, like Martha we can become “anxious and worried about many things.” Mary on the hand has singular focus on listening to the Lord, offering the hospitality of undivided attention to their friend and rabbi.
Sometimes we take this parable as a paradigm for family life, we must be more like Martha to get things done around the house, preparing meals, cleaning, keeping and maintaining the household and all of that is important, but not to the detriment of being present to each other. Rather than being Martha or Mary, I believe we are invited to be both Martha and Mary at the same time. First, we are agents of hospitality and welcome, and then agents with a singular focus who listen well to others and take care of our respective responsibilities, not shirking or ignoring them, expecting someone else to do the work.
During these summer days, where and when can you be hospitable to others, offering the welcome of your home to others? Where and when is it time to clean out the closets and share those unused items with someone else, someone in need. May the Lord give us the grace to appropriately be both Martha and Mary, being disciples of the Lord, keeping our attention and focus on Jesus who blesses us with his unending love.