REFLECTION CAPSULE – Oct 05, 2021: Tuesday

“Choosing the ‘one thing that is needed” – the one ‘chair’ – of being committed to the Lord and His Kingdom, so that we can enjoy true peace and joy in life!”

(Based on Jon 3:1-10 and Lk 10:38-42 – Tuesday of the 27th Week in Ordinary Time)

Luciano Pavarotti was an Italian operatic Tenor.
(A tenor is a type of classical male singing voice whose vocal range is one of the highest of the male voice types)

He made numerous recordings of complete operas and individual arias, gaining worldwide fame for the brilliance and beauty of his tone…
… and eventually established himself as one of the finest tenors of the 20th century.

Luciano relates:
“When I was a boy, my father, a baker, introduced me to the wonders of singing.

He urged me to work very hard to develop my voice.

Arrigo Pola, a professional tenor in my hometown of Modena, Italy, took me as a pupil.

I also enrolled in a teachers college.

On graduating, I asked my father, ‘Shall I be a teacher or a singer?’

“Luciano,” my father replied, ‘if you try to sit on two chairs, you will fall between them.
For life, you must choose one chair.’

“I chose one.

It took seven years of study and frustration before I made my first professional appearance.

It took another seven to reach the Metropolitan Opera.

And now I think whether it’s laying bricks, writing a book – whatever we choose – we should give ourselves to it.

Commitment, that’s the key.

Often we try to find joy and satisfaction in life, by trying to adjust and fit into many “chairs”.

We end up in frustrations and irritation and bitterness.

Our life gets entangled into a lot of annoyance and resentment

The Result: We feel life is totally unfair to us… We complain… We argue!

The Gospel of the Day reflects this common trend of our lives through the incident of Jesus in the house of Martha and Mary.

During his journey of ministry, Jesus came to a village and was welcomed in the house of Martha and Mary. Martha demonstrates great hospitality by welcoming Jesus into the home.

She gets busy with the tasks of serving their honoured Guest.

Mary, on the other side, displays great devotion and love, by sitting at the feet of Jesus

She gets immersed into spending time, with the revered Rabbi.

This incident invites us to appreciate the courage and devotion of Mary

The role adopted by Mary was something contrary to the fixed norms for a Jewish woman.

She sat the feet of Jesus, just as a student would, while learning at the feet of a Rabbi.

This was, however, a role reserved for men.

Yet, Mary “chose the better part” (Lk 10: 42)

This incident also invites us to reflect on the words of Christ to Martha.

Jesus tells Martha, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her?” (10:41-42).

The Lord extends an invitation to Martha to examine her approach…

Jesus is not against her actions of service and of providing a comfortable hospitality.

But he is concerned that Martha is too” worried and distracted”

Very often…
… our best intentions in life can get spoilt due to our tendency to over-worry or be over-anxious.
… our noblest deeds of works can be marred due to our unnecessary outbursts of irritation and distractions

The Greek word used for “distracted” is “periespato”

“Periespato” means to be pulled or dragged in different directions

As a result of this high degree of distraction….

Martha fails to maintain an important and basic dimension of hospitality – giving due attention to the guest

Martha also seeks to cause a humiliation for her sister, Mary, in public
Martha even goes on to accuse Jesus of “not caring about her”

We live in a world where we are prone to get easily “distracted” – to be pulled or dragged in different directions – like Martha.

But can we seek to overcome this crippling tendency by “choosing the better part” of giving whole attention to the Lord and to His Kingdom.

Life offers us many “chairs” – choices – which can distract us, cause us irritation and take away our focus from what is most basic and most important.

Let us ask the grace to choose the “one thing that is needed” – the one “chair” – of being committed to the Lord and His Kingdom…
… so that we can enjoy true peace and joy in life!

God Bless! Live Jesus!

Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism

“Christ is the light of humanity; and by proclaiming His Gospel to every creature, it may bring to all men that light of Christ which shines out visibly from the Church.”
These words open the Second Vatican Council’s Dogmatic Constitution on the Church.
The Church has no other light than Christ’s; according to a favourite image of the Church Fathers, the Church is like the moon, all its light reflected from the sun.
The Church is, in a phrase used by the Fathers, the place “where the Spirit flourishes.”

To believe that the Church is “holy” and “catholic,” and that she is “one” and “apostolic” (as the Nicene Creed adds), is inseparable from belief in God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. (Cf. CCC # 748-750)

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