Hearing precedes working and working while hearing

Reading and meditation on the Word of God, Tuesday of 27th week of ordinary time, October 8, 2019. Jonah 3, 1-10; Luke 10, 38-42. Voice: father Minggus sdb (reading) and father Peter sdb (meditation)

The theme of our meditation today is: Hearing Precedes Working and Working While Hearing. The Lord Jesus is happy to visit not only the house of Martha and Mary, but also our houses. The house here should be understood in different perspectives. A common life like the people of Nineveh whom the prophet Jonah visited is understood as a home. It is also like the place and atmosphere of our families, we normally see it as our homes. Each man and woman is also considered as a home of every peson.

This visit is not because we request God to do such job. This is mainly because He wants to find and affect our lives. God ensures that His visit has meaning, that is, He puts His will in us, that we will be enlightened and renewed. In addition, this visit evokes in us our response according to His will, which is the esence of faith.

Martha and Mary responded to the Lord’s visit to themselves with different attitudes, each of which had its meaning. Work and service are the real expressions of our faith. The Lord Jesus works and serves throughout His life. For example, Jesus emphasizes that He came to serve, and not to be served. Following Him as the teacher, we also work and serve. The people of Nineveh are also well-known workers, who built their large and famous city.

The counterpart of work and service is rest, reflection and contemplation. All these can be made into a common activity namely  the prayer. Our prayer moments show that we normally withdraw ourselves from work and service, then we spend ourselves in prayer and reflection, which, in today’s Gospel represented by Mary. An important quality we should have in prayer and reflection is listening. Jesus then emphasizes that this quality must be a better choice from us.

The act of listening really supports our prayers and works. By hearing we can know that God is passing by and coming to find our homes and ourselves too. Today the Lord visits us to teach this lesson: we need to listen well and attentively in order to work or serve as we should; we work or serve but we also give attention to listen well what God wants from us. Martha who is busy at work, hears Jesus’s reminder to her. Mary, who prays, also hears about the hustle and bustle of work or service around her. The Nineveh people, in their moments of trials, heard that there is a supreme power up there controlling and managing all in this life. We need to listen while we are praying or working.

Let’s pray. In the name of the Father … O Lord Jesus, strengthen our faith in You by making us more attentive in hearing You in Your words, so that our prayer and work can please the Father. Hail Mary … In the name of the Father …

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