Ahh, Christmas time! For some of us is an expected, exciting time! For others, it is an extremely busy Season where we are catching up with every day to have everything “the way it needs to be”. I remember as a child in Honduras, my excitement was about the special foods we had. In my very early childhood, my mom would make a kind of bread called rosquillas. I have never had them in the States but they were made with white dry corn and cheese, rolled like a doughnut and baked. Later, after they were baked, they would be placed in syrup and this dessert was called mojados. I didn’t get many toys. I can count on one hand the amount of toys I ever had as a child, but this special treat and the fun I had with other children is what excited me about Christmas. As I grew up, my Christmas focus changed, sadly, and sometimes it has been a joy and sometimes I’ve been glad when it was over.
My blog today is not about my childhood memories but our continuation in our time with the Master. Our next reading from the book of Luke is not about the birth of Christ but it is about Christ as we have been studying and reflecting on Him. We can connect it to the Christmas Season as during this time of the year we are so busy with preparations that we often forget about its meaning and our need to focus on what really matters which is Joy to the World as the Savior has come! Peace on Earth as the Angels proclaimed!. We tend to spend so much time buying presents, preparing meals, decorating our yards with the latest lights and figurines, The christmas tree, the shows we traditionally watch like the Nutcracker etc. We can go on and on about our traditions and they are all good but let us see what pleases Jesus and what He says is the most Important thing we can do. Mary and Martha’s story has something to tell us about this! We can find it in the book of Luke 10:38-42
Martha was really excited about the Lord coming to her house! She loved Him! She had to invite as many people as she could! Jesus, The Lord, the miracle maker! The one showing mercy to all the surrounding areas, curing them from diseases and loving on them! Teaching them things unimaginable. Everyone wanted to see him and here He was, coming to visit her and her family! She had so much to do! The house, it needed to be impeccable! The food, She had to prepare the best recipes she knew! Oh how awesome Jesus would feel that she had done all this for Him! It was too bad though that other people did not feel as she did and did not offer to help. She felt resentful that even her sister Mary was so lazy that she rather sit and listen to the Lord, but certainly The Lord would reprimand her once He knew! He would have to teach Mary a lesson! Her thoughts were busy pondering on how she needed to straighten things up! As Jesus was speaking in the background, her thoughts were on how she was going to get Jesus’s help on this matter. It was just not fair.
The passage says that a woman named Martha welcomed Jesus into her home. This tells us that Martha was a woman who was used to being busy and taking charge. She was able to provide The Lord with a place to come, visit and bless others with His presence. Martha was a strong woman but when she invited The Lord to come into her home, The Lord wanted her to listen to what he had to say and spend time with Him. He knew that all the preparations she had set to do, as we are told in the passage, and the busyness of her life were not the best investment for her future and the future of God’s children. We can hear how Jesus was hurting for Martha when He said to her,” Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her”
Contrast to Martha, Mary was sitting at the Lord’s feet, listening to His word, learning to be a disciple. The Lord took pleasure on her action. He was happy for Mary’s choice and sad for Martha’s. He wanted what was best for Martha and that was for her to absorb “The word of God”. Many times we are busy doing all kinds of works. They may all be necessary and important and may be for God’s glory working for His kingdom, but Jesus is teaching us here that the most important thing we can do for ourselves that no-one will take from us is His word. Studying it and becoming His disciples. If He was to give us a verse from the bible, it would be Matthew 6:33 which is the one I have been using frequently while reflecting on His teachings. “Seek first the Kingdom of God and everything else will be added unto you”
As we celebrate the birth of Jesus and His visit into the World let us remember that what pleases Him,The Lord, our Master is our time. Time spent enjoying His presence, time spent listening to His word and time spent with each other. Busyness will bring anger, frustration, tiredness and sometimes defeat and even depression but when we seek Him first, we will learn to prioritize and use our time wisely for our benefit and that of those around us!