Lenten Reader | Day 6


As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

-Luke 10:38-42
Luke tells the story of Jesus and the disciples stopping at the home of a woman named Martha. Martha had a sister named Mary, and the two women were there when Jesus came to the home. Luke tells us that Mary sat at the feet of Jesus and listened as he spoke. Martha, however, was in a flurry of activity trying to make her home perfect for their visit, “distracted by all the preparations that had to be made.” It’s understandable – there were going to be 13 people in her home. There was cleaning, cooking, dusting, so much to do! Martha became frustrated and maybe even annoyed with her sister as she sat while she worked. She asked Jesus to take notice of her hard work and to ask Mary to help her.

Do you relate to Martha’s annoyance? Does it take you back to your childhood when you wanted to go tattle to your father that your sibling wasn’t pulling their weight? Or do you relate more to Mary and understand wanting to soak in every moment and every word Jesus spoke?

Luke says that Jesus calmly spoke to her, and I picture it with such mercy and love in his voice, “Martha, Martha.” To paraphrase: “Be still. Sit down. Stop doing. Just let me fill you with my presence.”

To what or to whom are you devoted? Jesus wants us to be wholly devoted to Him. Sometimes this takes stopping our busyness in whatever else we’re spending our time and devotion on. This season, take time every day to be still and stop your flurry of activity to just sit at Jesus’ feet. Take time to be a Mary.

-Allison Butler