by Fr John Bartunek, LC | Source: Catholic.net
Eddy's E-mails July 29
(entered heaven in the first
By now I am sure you have found your
rhythm at work. You may even be starting to feel that healthy pleasure that comes from mastering new
techniques and doing a job really well, day after day.That´s good. We were made to work; our work is
a continuation of God’s own ur-work of Creation. He got everything started, we develop it. But along
with expertise and efficiency, along with achievements and effectiveness, there comes a temptation:
self-sufficiency. It´s one that today’s saint tended to fall into, and Jesus taught her the secret
way out of it.
Martha of Bethany was sister to Lazarus (the one Jesus rose from the dead –
check out John 11 if you need a reminder) and Mary (the one who anointed Jesus with precious perfume
a few days before his Passion). Jesus was good friends with this family and often stayed or dined
with them. Luke describes one of these visits in Chapter 10 of his Gospel. I´m sure you
remember it. Jesus is there in the living room talking with his disciples, and Mary of Bethany
is sitting there at his feet, drinking up every word. Martha, meanwhile, is busying herself getting
things ready for dinner, and is "distracted with all the serving" as St Luke puts it. Finally she
gets fed up trying to do everything herself, and she says to Jesus, "Lord, doesn´t it seem unfair to
you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work? Tell her to come and help me." Can´t you
just picture the scene? It shows how well they new Jesus, and how normal of a man Jesus was in so
many ways: Martha felt perfectly comfortable embroiling him in a typical, petty family squabble.
Jesus looks up at her, smiles, and then gives her a lesson I am sure she never forgot (and
never stopped thinking about). He says to her: "Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about
many things… But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken
away from her." Only one thing is needed, "unum est necessarium" in the Latin vulgate… to listen to
Jesus, to contemplate him, to let him serve us through his gifts of grace, to sit at his feet and
drink in his divine wisdom.
That´s what it´s all about, my hearty young nephew. So
continue enjoying your work, and do it as well as it can be done, but never forget that in the grand
scheme of things, what you accomplish on your own matters not a whit compared with what Christ wants
to accomplish in and through you.
Your loving uncle, Eddy
more about other Saints of the day, CLICK
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