Greetings from Faith Lutheran Church in Eldorado.
Mary and Martha were two sisters who knew Jesus, and in Luke 10 we read that Jesus makes a call on them. Their reaction to Jesus is different. Mary wishes to listen to Jesus while Martha's older sister traits kick in and she begins to prepare a meal. Martha grows frustrated with the fact that she is doing all the work while Mary is just sitting there. Martha politely asks Jesus to have Mary help her, but Jesus tells her that she is too anxious about many things and Mary has chosen the "good portion" and it shall not be taken from her.
The conflict we read of is more than different traits between two sisters. It deals with sanctifying the time and opportunities God gives us.
The action of both sisters were good. There is nothing evil or wrong with being a gracious host and preparing a meal for a guest and there is also nothing evil or wrong with sitting at the feet of Jesus listening to him. Therefore, our vocations and doing an honest day's work regardless if that is work done at or outside the home is God pleasing. Our work and vocations are to glorify God and serve our neighbor.
The concern is about getting a godly perspective on our lives and not a worldly one. It is about submitting to God's will in every part of our life. This is not a balancing act between when is it God's time and when is it my time. All time is God's. My work, leisure, school and worship time is all God's time. We are not to have the attitude that certain moments are dedicated to myself only and God is not allowed into this time. No! God wants our entire life, not just what we can spare. King David wrote, "My times are in your hand (Psalms 31:15)." And Isaiah wrote, "and he will be the stability of your times, abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is Zion's treasure (Isaiah 33:6)."
The commandment to remember the Sabbath day is a ceremonial law. Christians for the most part no longer worship on Friday night or Saturday. Most Christian worship is in keeping with the early Christian customs that center around the resurrection of Jesus on Sunday. The moral meaning is not the day, but to honor God in worship, gladly hear His word of both law and promise, receive His gift of the Lord's Supper when it is offered and support our brothers and sisters in their faith. In a real sense it is about sanctifying our time.
Mary chose to sit of the feet of Jesus to hear good news, it was where Martha should have been as well. Find the fellowship of fellow Christians and sit at Jesus' feet with them. Sanctify your time.
• David Otten is pastor of Faith Lutheran Church in Eldorado.