sacred story

Mary, Martha, and the Main Thing

Drawing of Mary, Martha, and Jesus by Gustave Dore. Courtesy Nicku/shutterstock.

Drawing of Mary, Martha, and Jesus by Gustave Dore. Courtesy Nicku/shutterstock.com

Just to get it out there, this story about Mary and Martha has always irritated me, because I think Martha is awesome, and she’s always made out to be a busy-body and a whiner.

See, Jesus is welcomed into the home of Mary and Martha and the thing to understand is that Jesus didn’t exactly travel alone. Dude had an entourage — so to welcome Jesus is to welcome who Jesus brings in with him. And to extend hospitality to that many people takes a lot of work, so Martha becomes understandably overwhelmed by her tasks and tries to get Jesus to talk her sister Mary into helping her, since Mary up until this point has only been sitting at Jesus’ feet listening. Jesus tells Martha that Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.

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