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Thursday, July 29, 2004

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St. Martha

Jeremiah 18:1-6
Psalm 146
John 11:19-27
or Luke 10:38-42

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the roadstop

" 'Do you believe this?' 'Yes, Lord,' she replied. 'I have come to believe that You are the Messiah, the Son of God: He Who is to come into the world.' " —John 11:26-27

Martha went out to meet Jesus on the road near her home. At this place on the road, Jesus challenged and graced Martha to believe that He is the Resurrection and the Life (Jn 11:25-26). Martha responded by making what is possibly one of the greatest acts of faith ever (Jn 11:27). Thus, this place on the road became a place of faith.

Jesus stopped at this spot (Jn 11:30), and soon Mary, Martha's sister, and many of her friends came to meet Jesus. They all began to weep, and Jesus likewise wept (Jn 11:33, 35). Why was Jesus weeping? He knew that He would raise Lazarus from the dead. So why would He mourn Lazarus' death? He may have been weeping because of the people's lack of faith. Jesus wept over Jerusalem for this reason on another occasion (Lk 19:41ff). Jesus may have been weeping because Martha's place of faith had so quickly changed into a place lacking faith.

Are there any places of faith in your life where the faith is disappearing? Look at your street, neighborhood, home, and workplace. Are these places of faith? Don't make Jesus cry. Live and profess your faith publicly, freely, and with perseverance.

Prayer:  Father, increase my faith (Lk 17:5).

Promise:  "Indeed, like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in My hand." —Jer 18:6

Praise:  St. Martha used her gifts of faith and hospitality to give a banquet for Jesus (Jn 12:2).

Reference:  (Presentation Ministries offers a variety of retreats through the fall and winter. For information or to register, call 937-587-5464 or e-mail retreats@presentationministries.com Sept. 2004 - Retreat for the Divorced; Oct. 2004 - Mother/Daughter Camp; Nov. 2004 - Gospel of Life; Dec. 2004 - Forming Small Christian Communities to Change the World.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert A. Stricker, December 13, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 18, 2003