Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word. 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.” And Jesus said to her, “ Martha, Martha you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed and Mary has chosen the good part, which will not be taken away from her.
Good morning. I am so pleased you have come to walk with me this morning. Also, I am glad you remembered to meet me where we have plans for that very small chapel – rather place of meditation and time for talking with God. Certainly it is a dream but dreams can come true. It is my hope I will have the strength to take on that project for surely I do not have the energy I once had. What is that old saying – “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”? As the winter gives way to spring, we will know if plans can be carried out. Come on, we must get on our way.
I was looking at old pictures and found a picture I had taken in Pennsylvania of a cow. Now I am sure it is a cow, and I believe it is a pregnant cow. The picture reminded me of Winifred who used to greet us with a loud “Mooo” as we walked to Woodside Chapel. As I looked at the picture, it caused me to remember a joke that was in a pamphlet the New Hampshire Electric Coop sent out some years ago.
It seemed a young woman of the city was visiting in the country, and she asked a farmer why the cow in the field did not have horns. The farmer politely answered that some cows don’t have horns because they are born with out them, and some cows don’t have horns because they have been cut off. But that cow over there doesn’t have horns, he explained, because it is a horse! That story has always brought a smile to my face, and it still does. In the picture today, that cow has horns.
There has been a smile on my face since yesterday when I asked Dale to do me a favor. She had decided, to my delight, to cook a turkey dinner for our Sunday meal. There is no meal that Dale and I enjoy more than a turkey dinner. She made the stuffing in a huge bowl that was passed down to me after my dad had died. I treasure that bowl, even though I do not cook or bake, because it brings back the memories of my childhood with my three brothers and three sisters. It is amazing to me that my parents could have raised and fed that many children. You needed large cooking implements to feed that many people.
On Sunday in our home, we always were together for dinner, which was after church. The time for dinner was around one or two o’clock. We children peeled the vegetables, set the table and remained in our Sunday clothes until after dinner. We sometimes argued with each other about it being our turn to
read the comics in the paper. If the argument was loud enough, my parents would tell us how fortunate we were to be able to read the comics on a Sunday for they were not allowed to do so. We were restricted, however, in our activities for we were not allowed to play cards on a Sunday or to go to the movies. It was the Lord’s Day, and we were to remember that. We were not allowed to play sports on Sunday as well, even though my brother Milton did sneak out the door to play baseball.
Growing up our family came first, and Sunday and mealtime was important. At those dinners, we talked to each other and learned what was planned for the week and what our responsibilities were to our home and to each other. It was a time to speak about what was happening in the world, and how it was important that we be involved in daily life beyond ourselves. Now, do you understand what that huge bowl did for me? It brought back memories of family and faith and what is of meaning in a religious home.
My faith was taught at Sunday school but more at home. And mealtime was when our faith was thought about, and where we became prepared to practice it or test it in our daily living. That was a place where Jesus taught about His Father and His Father’s will. We find He has a meal at the home of a Pharisee; He has a meal at Mary, Martha and Lazarus’ home. It is there, Jesus points out, that the meal is not the most important thing but His Word. Yet it is at a meal gathering where He finds He can teach God’s will.
When He has preached for a long time, we find He was concerned about those who had listened to Him, and He fed them with a few loaves and fishes. When we gather with our family and loved ones, it is a time to talk about faith and love and sharing and living our beliefs.
Now I need to show you a picture of the bowl that brought to mind again family meals and faith. How it brought to mind how wonderful my parents were to take care of us and feed what was a multitude of people; feed us with love and faith.
See why I was smiling. Is that not a wonderful picture of Dale? Very funny! Very funny! It was so funny that I did not ask her to please hold that bowl so that we could see her. May it put a smile on your face as it did mine; a smile that has lasted for more than one day.
The time together is over. We have come back to where we began. One person who wrote to me asked about including a devotion on our walk- so we will end with a prayer and a benediction.
Dear God, we thank you for being with us on our walk today. Help us to appreciate all the blessings that have been bestowed upon us, blessings of friendship, of mealtime, of faith, of smiles. Help us to remember this day that You, our Lord, walk with us, and all we need do is to ask, and You will reach out with Your hand and surround us with Your abundant love and wisdom. With Your love and wisdom, we will walk our journey safely and with joy; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Until our next walk
May the Lord watch between me and thee while we are absent one from the other.
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