“Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. But 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.” But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:38-42)
As a common practice, I try not to root my postings in the events that are happening when I write; since I sometimes write a week ahead, what is news now is past news when you read this. Dallas, Louisiana, and Minneapolis were high profile news spots the day I sat down to write this, and yesterday’s post rested heavily on the news of that time. I cannot and would not try to predict what the latest news is when you read this.
If you can remember back to the Monday of this week, I talked about how people can live and believe in different ways, yet live in harmony. My point was focused on slightly varying faith beliefs under the larger umbrella of believe in a common God – capital letter “G”. Yesterday I bemoaned large sections of society and the global community espousing and acting out beliefs that would not fit under that large umbrella. And the events of these past days, as I write this, are still floating around in my thinking.
But my focus is sharpened and defined when I read Jesus’ words “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing.” And I imagine the Divine saying to me, “Carole, Carole, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing – love for all of humanity.” The language we use to convey our feelings can trip us up as often as it explains our intent. People of good conscience place meanings on things that were not meant. And to reiterate the theme I started on Monday – that is why God calls people who are so diverse, so that authenticate Christianity can be lived out in such a way that it draws the maximum amount of people to it. While there may be “Marthas” among us who worry, and try to do and say the correct things, there are many, many “Marys” who have chosen “the better part” for them and those in their circle and acquaintance, and that will not be taken from them.
My heart bleeds, my head mourns, and my spirit is racked with grief over the event which were last week. I want to say so many things, and establish my opinion and perspective in words. But in the long run, my opinion does not matter as much as what is done in the wider society. I know who I am, and what I believe. And those around me know that also. Putting forth my opinion and perspective is not needed. Putting forth the unalterable love that is of and from God is what is needed. Being attentive to God, and God’s teachings on love, acceptance, compassion, and mercy is what is needed. And forgiveness – oh beloved reader, forgiveness is so needed. When we carry around resentment and hatred, prejudice and animosity, violence and revenge – we carry around lethal weapons! It is not, to say the very least, the “better part.” It is my hope in pray that as the days moved forward every chose and continues to choose “the better part.” Selah!