21155 College BLVD
Olathe, KS 66061

Sunday, July 17, 2022

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Unexpected and Intentional Distraction

As digital tablets and smart phones keep us busy and on the go, today’s gospel reminds us of a struggle: when are we to set aside our busy calendars, duties, and to-do lists and simply rest in God’s presence, listening to what God has to say to us? This tension mounts in our gospel as Jesus addresses Martha’s busyness, worry, and distraction, juxtaposed with Mary’s contemplation, focus, and desire to sit at the feet of the great teacher. But is “quietly sitting” even possible in our age of distractions? Perhaps we can find helpful advice in our first reading, as Abraham rests in the heat of the day. In that time of rest, he was ready to receive the three guests who came bearing the news that Sarah would have a son, fulfilling God’s promise given years earlier. With the heat keeping him from moving on to other things, the guests had Abraham’s undivided attention. These readings remind us how crucial it is to set aside time to spend with God. We might even wonder what sort of things Jesus was saying to Mary. Were they profound words, akin to the “mystery” the author of Colossians addresses in the epistle? Jesus was the person in whom God was pleased to dwell, that same one who is “the hope of glory.”

Gospel: Luke 10:38-42

During his visit to the home of Mary and Martha, Jesus reminds Martha that her concern for her many tasks distracts from the one thing that precedes all else: abiding in the presence of God.

38Now as [Jesus and his disciples] went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. 40But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.” 41But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; 42there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.”