16 Jul


(A biblical reflection on the 16th Sunday in Ordinary Time [Year C] – July 17, 2016)

Gospel Reading: Luke 10:38-42 

First Reading: Genesis 18:1-10; Psalms: Psalm 15:2-5; Second Reading: Colossians 1:24-28 

MARIA DAN MARTA - 001The Scripture Text

Now as they went on their way, He entered a village; and a woman named Martha received Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who st at the Lord’s feet and listened to His teaching. But Martha was distracted with much serving; and she went to Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things; one thing is needful. Mary has chosen the good portion, which shall not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42 RSV)

Scripture is filled with teaching, advice, and even stories to help us understand what it means to welcome the Lord into our lives. This brief account of Jesus’ visit to the home of Martha and Mary is probably one of the most memorable examples, if only because of the contrast Luke draws between Martha’s anxious activity and Mary’s peaceful openness.

Mary understood that Jesus wasn’t as concerned with the outward appearance of her home as He was with the inner condition of her heart. And somehow, she knew that He would feel more welcome if she just sat and listened to Him speak about His Father and the Kingdom of God.

The story of Abraham and the three visitors reveals another dimension of what it means to welcome the Lord. Like Martha, Abraham hurried to make sure his guests were well care for. But then, as soon as he could, he made sure he joined his visitors and waited on them. He didn’t allow himself to become “distracted with much serving” (Luke 10:40) but made sure that his guests were his top priority.

The key is to make sure that we have prepared a habitation for the Lord so that we can receive His words peacefully. We will have to make some preparations, such as ridding ourselves of distractions so that we can quiet our hearts, but at the same time we must be careful not to lose sight of our goal: a transforming encounter with Jesus.

Do you want to welcome Jesus into your hearts? Follow Mary of Bethany and Abraham. Don’t be concerned only with outward things. After all, you can’t clean yourself up to the point that you’re acceptable to Him. If that were the case, there would have been no need for His cross. Instead, put aside your busyness for awhile – especially at Mass today – and imitate Mary of Bethany. Let Jesus feed you with His saving word and Eucharistic presence.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, I welcome You into my heart. Fill me, dear Lord, with the joy of Your presence. Free me from worries and anxieties so that I may give You my undivided attention and love. Amen.

Jakarta, 15 July 2016

A Christian Pilgrim 


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