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Tuesday, July 29, 1997

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St. Martha

Exodus 33:7-11; 34:5-9, 28
Psalm 103
John 11:19-27 or Luke 10:38-42

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martha and me

"On their journey Jesus entered a village where a woman named Martha welcomed Him to her home." —Luke 10:38

Jesus came to Martha's house in the midst of "their journey." "Their" probably refers to Jesus' apostles and even disciples. Thus, Martha was not cooking for three people. She was probably cooking for ten, twenty, or more. Moreover, everything in those days was "made from scratch." There was, of course, no refrigeration. You began to prepare a meal by milking a cow and killing a steer (see Gn 18:7-8). Therefore, Martha had an overwhelming amount of work to do to fix supper for Jesus and his whole entourage. Under these circumstances, we would probably have asked the Lord the same question as Martha did: "Lord, are You not concerned that my sister has left me to do the household tasks all alone?" (Lk 10:40)

Jesus surprisingly corrected Martha, and Martha surprisingly took the correction (see Jn 11:27). When Jesus corrects you not only for your sins but also for making reasonable, justified appeals for help, how do you take correction?

Sit at His feet and listen "to His words" (Lk 10:39), even His most difficult words of correction.

Prayer:  Father, make me holy — no matter what it takes.

Promise:  "The Lord, the Lord, a merciful and gracious God, slow to anger and rich in kindness and fidelity, continuing His kindness for a thousand generations." —Ex 34:6-7

Praise:  "Martha welcomed (Jesus) to her home" (Lk 10:38).

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Ralph J. Lawrence, November 12, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 10, 1996