Sunday, November 16, 2014

Are You a Martha or a Mary?
Are you a Martha or a Mary?  I'm a Martha, I'm a doer, I see what needs to be done and I do it.  At Mass this weekend we heard from Proverbs 31:

 "She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her fingers ply the spindle.
She reaches out her hands to the poor,
and extends her arms to the needy.

That woman isn't being praised for sitting and listening; she gets stuff done.  I get stuff done.

This weekend I took my daughter on a Girl Scout retreat.  It was held at a local camp/retreat center and put on by a committee of women involved in both Girl Scouts and the Catholic Church.  It was sponsored by the office of youth ministry for our archdiocese.  My daughter was the only girl from her troop who chose to attend; most of the other girls there were with their troops.  My daughter was put in a dorm with a couple of troops and those troops' leaders were the adults in that dorm (there were only two adult spots available that complied with the Safe Environment guidelines).  Because of the set-up,about half the adults, including me, ended up in a dorm with just adults.  We were all troop leaders, we were all women who were used to spending weekend camping trips planning, facilitating, teaching, and corralling girls.  We were used to being kept up at night by talking girls and being woken up by the girls as soon as the sun was up (if they slept that late).  On this trip we were away from them and with other adults who do what we do, and we had a ball.  Usually on trips like this, the girls are up half the night Friday night and then are exhausted Saturday night and sleep.  Well, the adults were a little different.  We all were asleep pretty early Friday night (unlike the girls in their dorms) and Saturday night we delayed lights out because everyone was talking, sharing stories, comparing troop activities, problems and solutions.  Yes, we pitched in when we saw work that needed to be done but we weren't in charge, we weren't responsible, and if we wanted to wander away to the chapel or to take a walk, we weren't missed.

One thing the girls did was skits acting out Bible stories.  One they did was Martha and Mary.  They "updated" the story and had Martha and Mary planning a party and Martha had her lists of things that needed to be done, stuff they had to get and so forth.  The party started and Mary was greeting the guests and spending time with them; Martha was in the kitchen doing chores and was upset that Mary wasn't helping.  Jesus told her to chill and that it was more important to spend time with the guests than to handle all those chores.  My thought was "cute".  

Tonight I was thinking about the retreat and about how much I enjoyed not being in charge and then I remembered the girls' skit about Martha and Mary.  I doubt you'll every completely turn me into a Mary, but I think God's message to this Martha this weekend was to chill a little and spend some time with Him. 

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree. I am so much more of a Martha than a Mary. And, I don't think Jesus was saying that Mary was better than Martha, like so many do. Instead, he was gently reminding her that in "choosing the better part" we need to find balance. That day, yes there were hostessing responsibilities and preparations for the visit, but there was also time for listening and learning. I think so many times we miss the message of Mary and Martha. There are times to be both. You totally nailed it!


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