Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Lessons In Choosing The Better Part

This morning as I listened to the Gospel from Luke recounting that very well known scene of Martha and Mary during one of Jesus' visits to their home, I was thinking about choosing the better part. This is what Jesus tells Martha about her sister when Martha is troubled and anxious about having to do all the serving.
I heard Fr. Robert Barron give an interpretation of this story that I had not heard before. While many Scripture scholars use this Gospel account to demonstrate the active (Martha) and contemplative (Mary) lives, Fr. Barron explained that Jesus did not rebuke Martha because she was busy, but because she was anxious and somewhat unfocused. She lost sight of why and Who she was serving. Father went further to say that even if Martha had been sitting at Jesus' feet, she still may have been anxious and troubled.
This made me think about my own times at Jesus' feet~ those times when I am before Him in the Blessed Sacrament, or after receiving Him in Holy Communion. How often I find myself anxious and troubled over many things even though Jesus is right there before me. Choosing the better part seems to have less to do with being active or contemplative, and more with how we remain focused on Jesus no matter where we are or what we are doing.
As today is also the feast of St Faustina Kowalska, I was able to see how this nun was able to live out choosing the better part in all Christ called her to do. She was busy spreading the message of Divine Mercy, but always remained focused on the One who called her to do the work.
If you have never read this beautiful saint's diary, I strongly recommend it. It is long, but very easy to read. It is one of those books I have highlighted and dog earred sections of, and go back to often.
So let us follow the example of St Faustina and all the saints who at some point in their lives learned how to choose the better part. Martha became a saint, so I am sure she eventually learned this lesson as well.


Colleen said...

Karinann, great reflection. I love the interpretation of Martha and Mary. Makes so much sense. Love the graphic you used of the gospel reading.
The first time I read St Faustina's diary, I could not finish it. It just did not resonate with me at all. A few years later, I devoured it. I was in a different place I guess. God bless!

Karinann said...

Thanks Colleen. I know what you mean about a book not resonating at a particular time. God always knows when we are ready to hear/read certain things and will lead us back to whatever it was, just as He did with St Faustina's diary for you.
Hugs & Blessings!

Closing Prayer

Psalm 45: Canticle of Love to the King

My heart overflows with a good theme;
I address my verses to the King;
My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever.

Gird Your sword on Your thigh, O Mighty One,
In Your splendor and Your majesty!
And in Your majesty ride on victoriously,
For the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness;
Let Your right hand teach You awesome things.
Your arrows are sharp;
The peoples fall under You;
Your arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.

Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;
A scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of joy above Your fellows.
All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad.
Kings’ daughters are among Your noble ladies;
At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.