Wednesday after Invocavit
Scripture: St. Luke 10:38—11:13 (NKJV)
10:38 Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”
41 And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. 42 But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”
11:1 Now it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.”
2 So He said to them, “When you pray, say:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. 3 Give us day by day our daily bread. 4 And forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”
5 And He said to them, “Which of you shall have a friend, and go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves; 6 for a friend of mine has come to me on his journey, and I have nothing to set before him’; 7 and he will answer from within and say, ‘Do not trouble me; the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give to you’? 8 I say to you, though he will not rise and give to him because he is his friend, yet because of his persistence he will rise and give him as many as he needs.
9 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
11 “If a son asks for bread from any father among you, will he give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent instead of a fish? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? 13 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”
“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!” (Luke 11:13).
It wasn’t that long ago we celebrated Christmas. We remember the joy we experienced in giving gifts to children, whether they be our own or the children of others. Jesus points out that even evil people can show a certain degree of care for others. The point Jesus makes is quite simple. “If you then, being evil…how much more will your heavenly Father.”
Thus, when we pray, “Our Father in heaven,” we should have no doubts as to what He will do. He always does, and always will do, what is best for us. And the ultimate, the very best gift, is the gift of the Holy Spirit. And what a gift it is for “the Holy Spirit has called me by the Gospel, enlightened me with His gifts, sanctified and kept me in the true faith.” (Third Article of the Apostles’ Creed – Small Catechism).
The everyday gifts that God provides, “clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals, and all I have” (Explanation to the First Article of the Apostles’ Creed – Luther’s Small Catechism), important as they are for life in this world, pale in comparison to the faith God has given us, for through faith we have been granted life eternal.
Martha was caught up in the everyday. Mary was caught up by the forever day. Martha wanted to “give good gifts” to her guests. Mary was content to receive from her Heavenly Father the gift of Christ and gave her ears to His Word.
Prayer: Gracious heavenly Father, keep us in Your Word. Amen.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.