READINGS for 2006-10-10

Didache | Companion | Sabbath

DIDACHE

MARY?S CHOICE

??. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.? ? Luke 10:42

Martha, Mary and Lazarus were cousins who had strong bonds with Jesus. Martha enjoyed household chores and Mary of listening to Jesus.
      I like Mary?s choice. I try to put importance on the word of God in my life. At every opportunity I listen to the teachings and read my Bible every day.
      There are about 7,000 direct and 33,000 indirect promises that I can claim in the Bible. One time, I learned to claim Bible promises like that in Isaiah 53:5 that ?by His stripes we were healed.? When prayed-over, I claimed this promise in my case of urinary tract infection that kept recurring; and I was healed. God?s promises in His words have so much power waiting to be released.
      In life, we have lots of choices: reading the newspaper, which can make us anxious, pouring over magazines that leads us to sin, or long hours of watching television. We can go ?malling? every weekend on shopping binges and exercise our purchasing power, but not spend time on God?s words is missing out on real power. Which is the better part? Donna E.

REFLECTION:
How much time do we give to knowing Jesus?

Jesus, I accept you in my life today. Make my heart your home.

COMPANION

1st READING

Galatians 1:13-24


Paul wants the Galatians to see that the Gospel demands that our lives be changed from the life of sin we used to live to a life of grace and holiness. ?Look at the change that the Gospel has brought to his own life and then you will be convinced that it has the power to change yours,? he seems to be saying. This is true. We should look at the way the Holy Spirit has worked in the lives of the saints on a regular basis so that we will be encouraged and inspired that there is still hope for us! God has the power to make even little old me holy and useful for His Kingdom. I think that it is a good practice to always have a book of life of a saint by our bedside so that we can read it regularly.

13 You heard of my former way of life in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it, 14 and progressed in Judaism beyond many of my contemporaries among my race, since I was even more a zealot for my ancestral traditions. 15 But when [God], who from my mother?s womb had set me apart and called me through his grace, was pleased 16 to reveal his Son to me, so that I might proclaim him to the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult flesh and blood, 17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; rather, I went into Arabia and then returned to Damascus. 18 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to confer with Kephas and remained with him for fifteen days. 19 But I did not see any other of the apostles, only James the brother of the Lord. 20 (As to what I am writing to you, behold, before God, I am not lying.) 21 Then I went into the regions of Syria and Cilicia. 22 And I was unknown personally to the churches of Judea that are in Christ; 23 they only kept hearing that ?the one who once was persecuting us is now preaching the faith he once tried to destroy.? 24 So they glorified God because of me.

P S A L M

Psalm 139:1-3, 13-14, 14-15

R: Guide me, Lord, along the everlasting way.


1 O LORD, you have probed me and you know me; 2 you know when I sit and when I stand; you understand my thoughts from afar. 3 My journeys and my rest you scrutinize, with all my ways you are familiar. (R) 13 Truly you have formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother?s womb. 14 I give you thanks that I am fearfully, wonderfully made;   wonderful are your works. (R) My soul also you knew full well; 15 nor was my frame unknown to you when I was made in secret, when I was fashioned in the depths of the earth. (R)

G O S P E L

Luke 10:38-42


Get it right! Jesus wants us to have a good balance between prayer and service in our lives. Neither of these two should exist without the other. They may take on very different forms at different times in our lives, but they should always be there. Without a balance between the two we will be ineffective for the Gospel. Service without prayer will be without the power of God behind it. And prayer without service will ultimately lead to hypocrisy. Let us try to avoid the two extremes and find the happy and balanced path somewhere in between.

38 He entered a village where a woman whose name was Martha welcomed him. 39 She had a sister named Mary [who] sat beside the Lord at his feet listening to him speak. 40 Martha, burdened with much serving, came to him and said, ?Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me by myself to do the serving? Tell her to help me.? 41 The Lord said to her in reply, ?Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. 42 There is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.?

my reflections
think:
Jesus wants us to have a good balance between prayer and service in our lives. Neither of these two should exist without the other.

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God?s special verse/thought for me today________________

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T O D A Y ? S BLESSING LIST

Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________

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READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR 2Maccabees 10-12

SABBATH

MARTHA?S HANDS AND MARY?S HEART

It?s always tempting to contrast Martha and Mary with one another, and consequently to do also the same with (if not to entirely dichotomize) contemplation and action, prayer and service, and so on.
      The great Brazilian archbishop, symbol of the Church?s preferential option for the poor, Dom Helder Camara, put it this way: ?The ideal thing is to have Martha?s hands and Mary?s heart.? That?s precisely why we try our best to be ?contemplatives in action.?
      Still, we see the point in Martha?s complaint to Jesus about her sister. As a Scripture scholar explains, Mary?s choice of sitting at the feet of Jesus and listening to His words was highly unusual for two reasons: first, the rule of hospitality would oblige her to share in the preparation of the meal, and second, Jewish customs excluded women from instruction by a rabbi. Of course, regarding this, Jesus differed as always from His contemporaries,  and Luke the Evangelist emphasizes this with his spotlight often on women.
      Nevertheless, let us not forget that Jesus could only sit at table to eat afterwards because Martha had continued working in the kitchen. He taught Martha a lesson, but He never asked her to come and sit down with Mary and Himself. Also He Himself knew very well the obligations of hospitality.
      All in all, we can say that Jesus acknowledged both aspects of prayer and of action, even if He did emphasize the importance or primacy of prayer. The real issue perhaps behind this Gospel episode is actually more of Martha?s pride in asserting herself over her sister, comparing herself more favorably to her and making her feel guilty.
     And so let us not similarly cause imbalances upon what is truly meant to be on equal footing; let us not distinguish or separate what is truly meant to be united and complementary with one another. Fr. Martin M.

REFLECTION QUESTION:
Do I always work for justice and equality?

Father, empower me with the grace to seek only what You wish.

St. Francis Borgia, confessor, pray for us.




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