10 Oct 2017: Prudence

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Tuesday of the Twenty-seventh Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1: Jon. 3:1-10; Gospel: Lk. 10: 38-42

Today’s gospel is very familiar to us. Often times we consider Mary as the symbol of the one who leads a life of prayer or rather living a life of contemplation and Martha as the portrayal of activism or workaholic life.

But, I would like to reflect on characters Martha and Mary, considering their view on judging the interest and the nature of Jesus or rather liking of Jesus. I would say Mary prudently judged as who Jesus was and the purpose of his visit to their home. She, therefore, “sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying.” (Lk. 10:39). On the other hand, Martha, as usual, acted habitually, worried much about getting the best of things done for Jesus. Of course, that involves a lot of time, goodwill, energy etc. seeing Mary, apparently doing nothing, Martha complains to Jesus “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.” (Lk. 10:40). Here we can understand that Martha failed to recognize the purpose of Jesus’ visit.

Often times we in our daily life fail to judge the purpose of certain actions of the other. For today’s reflection, I would like to give emphasis on someone’s visit to our home like a priest, a beggar, a child, a sister, a neighbour, a friend and it could be anybody for that matter. What is expected of us is that we pray and arrive at a prudent and wise decision with circumspection, foresightedness, shrewdness, and docility. For prudence is a habit of the practical, rather than speculative, intellect and is properly called wisdom with respect to human activities. Therefore, let us cultivate in us both pastoral and domestic prudence in ministry and home affairs respectively. Let us also pray that we may act like Mary to be prudent in our dealings with others.

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