As we lead up to , the scene is placed as Mary, a disciple, hanging on every word of Jesus, but Martha busy making a meal. And while making a meal is not wrong, but she is so caught up in her work that she forgets who is in the room. It can be so easy to get caught up in busy work that we then forget to listen. We are told that Mary chose “the good portion.” Just like choosing the better options of a meal, Mary chose Jesus over the busy work around her. God is presenting Himself in the person of His son at a table welcoming us to join. Mary chose the right table. The disciple who reflects on Jesus’ teaching receives a meal that cannot be removed.
Jesus was praying, not in a secret place, but in a place where others knew. And when he is was done, the disciples just wanted to know how they could pray like him. In those times prayer was a very theatrical and was more of a performance. And today we can learn that which was Jesus’ instruction, that anywhere we are, work, school, anywhere, we can commune with God, and He will be there!
So we are lead into the Lord’s Prayer. Once it was called the disciple’s prayer because it was given by Jesus to his disciples as a how we are to pray.
We start by giving recognition to the holiness of God. We follow it by welcoming God’s will. Not our own will, not the new job, new boyfriend, new girlfriend, or new gadget that we want. It is that God will be known in every situation. The use of Father is used only 15 times in the Old Testament. So the use here was not common. But it was understood as a place of power, respect, and honor. There is irony where he wants to be close as a Father but at the same time to be above all and in power of all.
We are going to stop here for this week.
We are coming off a troubling week. Suicide of a local teen. Murder of a pastor’s wife. Riots on college campuses. Burning of churches in Indonesia. And the tragic, senseless loss of life of the terrorist attacks in Paris. It is easy to live like Martha and be distracted by these events. But Jesus is calling you to his table to be like Mary and focus on Him.
38 Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. (ESV)
11:1 Now Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.” (ESV)
2 And he said to them, “When you pray, say:
“Father, hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come. (ESV)