When Jesus was in Bethany
he was a welcome guest
within the home of Lazarus,
and there he stayed to rest.
Good Martha hurried off to cook
some food for him to eat;
but Mary, searching, found a stool
and sat down at his feet.
While Mary listened to the words
that Jesus had to say,
her sister, busy at her work,
sent angry looks her way.
Said Martha, "Jesus, don't you care
that I must work alone?
Why do you let her sit and talk,
her idleness condone?"
"Now, Martha, Martha," Jesus said,
"when I come here to dine,
don't waste your time on special food.
A simple meal is fine.
Come, sit with Mary at my side
and feed upon my words,
that you may fill your mind and heart
with all that you have heard."
Sometimes, like Martha, we may be
too zealous in a chore,
like Mary, leave a task undone
for needs we can't ignore.
We long to find a balance, God,
in living out each day.
Help us be faithful in our work,
yet take the time to pray.
Mary Nelson Keithahn, a retired United Church of Christ ordained pastor and church educator, has been a curriculum writer-editor, journalist, and lyricist for musical dramas and anthems. She still works out of her home in Rapid City, South Dakota, as a free-lance writer. In 2016 she published Elfie: Adventures on the Midwest Frontier, a chapter book for children, and Embracing the Light: Reflectioins on God’s Holy Word, a collection of meditations for individual or small group use. Augsburg Fortress also published Sing the Stories of God’s NEW People, the third in a trilogy of Bible story-based collections of songs for young children, written with her longtime colleague, John D. Horman. The two have written over a hundred hymns togethe… Go to person page >
Display Title: When Jesus Was in BethanyFirst Line: When Jesus was in BethanyTune Title: MARY AND MARTHAAuthor: Mary Nelson KeithahnMeter: 86.86 DScripture: Luke 10:38-42Date: 2003Subject: Christian Life | Practical vs. spiritual demands of lifeSource: The Song Lingers On