Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Quality Time Tango

Have you ever tried to spend "quality time" with someone, only to find out that they were too busy, or too distracted to get it?

Today's sermon was once again delivered by our deacon. He focused on the story of Martha and Mary (Luke 10:38-42)
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.’
Rick said that we all have our Martha moments when we feel that someone is dumping on us, or times when we get too busy, and we all have to stop and take the time to listen to God. By keeping his sermon simple and short, he was able to get this point across, that we always have the time to listen to the Lord. He is always ready to give us real quality time. Why do we seem to prefer listen to the distractions?

The "Quality Time Tango" is something that requires two fully focused particiants. In my case, I know which partner will be the clumsy one.


  1. Although the sermon's lesson is an old one, it's good to here it periodically, because we continue to allow ourselves to be distracted from God. There's a reason His voice is still and small.


  2. St. Augustine comments on this scene as follows: "Martha, who was arranging and preparing the Lord's meal, was busy doing many things, whereas Mary preferred to find her meal in what the Lord was saying. In a way she deserted her sister, who was very busy, and sat herself down at Jesus' feet and just listened to His words. She was faithfully obeying what the Psalm said: `Be still and know that I am God' (Psalm 46:10). Martha was getting annoyed, Mary was feasting; the former coping with many things, the latter concentrating on one. Both occupations were good" ("Sermon", 103).

    Martha has come to be, as it were, the symbol of the active life, and Mary that of the contemplative life. However, for most Christians, called as they are to sanctify themselves in the middle of the world, action and contemplation cannot be regarded as two opposite ways of practising the Christian faith: an active life forgetful of union with God is useless and barren; but an apparent life of prayer which shows no concern for apostolate and the sanctification of ordinary things also fails to please God. The key lies in being able to combine these two lives, without either harming the other. Close union between action and contemplation can be achieved in very different ways, depending on the specific vocation each person is given by God.