Both Essential Characters – Ignatian Spirituality

I’ve a love-hate relationship with the month of August. I really like the beginning of the brand new faculty 12 months and the odor of recent crayons and new books. I hate that the lazy days of summer season are ending and can quickly give technique to extremely-scheduled days. I really like the promise of cooler nights and crinkly, autumn leaves. I hate the overgrown weeds within the yard and piles of trip laundry within the hallway. I really like the busyness of getting ready for the brand new faculty 12 months, however I don’t love that I get too busy with preparations and don’t make sufficient time to wish.

Every August, I really feel like Martha however want I could possibly be Mary. After all, Jesus did say that Mary selected “the better part,” (Luke 10:42) proper?

As I take into consideration Martha and Mary, my thoughts wanders, and I discover myself in a theater. I’m an onlooker viewing the Martha and Mary scene taking part in out on stage. I stand sheepishly within the wings, out of sight. I don’t need Jesus to catch sight of me, as a result of I’m embarrassed that I’ve been a stranger recently. I’m not there for even a breath, although, earlier than Jesus notices me and faucets the seat of the chair subsequent to him.

“Come and sit, just for a bit,” he says.

I really feel unhealthy that I’ve interrupted this iconic scene and even worse that I haven’t prayed sufficient this month, however I oblige him. Sitting down subsequent to him, I’m stunned that Jesus doesn’t appear to be judging me for not praying. In reality, all I sense is compassion and love.

As if studying my ideas, Jesus appears me within the eyes and says, “Go easy on yourself.”

Tears flood my imaginative and prescient. I attempt to choke them again however can’t even squeak out a reply. So I merely nod.

Still processing this overwhelming compassion, I silently observe the scene. From this vantage level, it happens to me that there are two characters: Martha and Mary. I ponder this.

I understand that the issues that preserve me so busy in August are issues that must be executed for our household to operate effectively within the coming months. I’ve been longing to discard my inner Martha in favor of Mary, however Martha is a crucial a part of my function as a father or mother and member of my household. Mary and Martha are each important characters; they’re each needed for the scene to play.

I observe Jesus saying to Martha that “Mary has chosen the better part.” This remark has at all times confounded me. Interestingly, as I sit there subsequent to Jesus, higher ideas emerge than my dichotomous self-judgments, and my perfectionism relating to prayer falls away. When I’m close to Jesus, one other approach of seeing emerges that reconciles my simplistic judgments of myself. It’s a approach of seeing that views every part in a extra compassionate, extra loving, and fewer judgmental approach. I ponder, may this be associated to “the better part” of which he speaks?

This 12 months, I believe I’ll take the cue and lay down my love-hate relationship with August. I’m going to simply accept Jesus’ compassion and prolong this compassion to others and to myself. And I’m going to embrace my internal Martha and my internal Mary. It seems, they’re each important characters.

Image: Christ within the House of Martha and Mary by Johannes Vermeer. Public area by way of Wikimedia Commons.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *