Tyranny of the Trivial
Marty's cheeks flushed from the heat, as she stoked the fire with the branches she'd gathered earlier in the day. Carefully, she laid several fish on the baking stone... close enough to the fire to cook, but not close enough to burn, while she tended to her other tasks. There were many guests coming to the house, later in the day, and there was much left to do. She would have to hurry.
She grabbed two buckets from beside the hearth, and rushed to the village well to gather water. Her mind raced, as she thought of all of the things she still had to accomplish. The vegetables had to be cleaned and chopped. She needed to pick some figs and dates as well. She was thankful, at least, that her younger sister was to sweep the house, while Marty prepared the food.
Much to her horror, when she arrived back home, she realized that the guests had already started to arrive. Not only had they started to arrive, but there were many more than she had been expecting. Surely her brother did not think that she could feed that many people with the meal she had planned.
Marty rushed to chop all of the vegetables that she had, throwing them into the large kettle that was hanging over the fire. She turned the fish, then dashed out into the garden. She picked as many figs and dates as she could carry in her apron, and hurried back into the kitchen. She checked her earthen pots to see how much oil, honey and flour she had, so she could make some sweet cakes to go with the fruit.
Marty pushed her hair out of her eyes. Where was her sister? Didn't she know that she needed her in the kitchen, to help finish the dinner preparations? She could not believe it when she realized that her sister was in the great room, visiting with the guests. Well, not all of the guests. One particular guest. In fact, her sister was sitting at his feet, hanging on his every word, like a silly, infatuated school girl.
Marty grew more and more cross, as she struggled to finish preparing the meal. She knew the guests were tired and hungry, and was embarrassed that they would think her a poor hostess. In anger, she flew out of the kitchen, to demand that her sister come and help her. She stopped directly in front of her sister, and addressed the guest.
“Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me alone to serve? Therefore tell her to help me.”
Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”
Marty glanced sadly toward the kitchen, and suddenly dinner did not seem so important, after all.
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