July 21, 2013 –– Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Many of us have struggled with the story of Martha and Mary related in today’s Gospel from Luke. Our sympathies tend to be with Martha, who seems to be doing all the work, while Mary is enjoying listening to Jesus, but not doing much to prepare food or to serve the Lord and those who are with Him.
Jesus, however, has an important stewardship point for each of us. In those times when we feel stressed, when we feel like no one appreciates us, when we feel like we are the only ones who truly understand what is important, we need to hear Jesus saying, “Martha, Martha. You are anxious and worried about many things.”
It is very easy to get caught up in the daily struggles of everything we do — working, parenting, serving, ministering, caring, and even loving. And, of course, all of those things are important. But what, according to Jesus, should be the most important thing (“There is need of only one thing.”)?
That one necessary thing is at the heart of stewardship — our relationship to the Lord and our trust in Him. That necessary thing fulfills itself in our prayer life and in the other ways we set aside time for God to be a part of our lives. That time is precious, and is the true “food for the soul” about which Jesus often talks.