Marinate

Luke 10:38-42 (NIV)

As Jesus and His disciples were on their way, He came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to Him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lordís feet listening to what He said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to Him and asked, "Lord, donít You care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!"

"Martha, Martha," the Lord answered, "you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her."

Did you ever wonder what Jesus prayed about when He spent entire nights in prayer? Iíll bet it wasnít a list He had compiled throughout the day. Iíll bet He couldnít wait to be alone with His Father, to just be with Him.

When that desire wells up in our hearts to just be with our Lord, weíre entering a place that doesnít look like we probably always thought prayer looked like. Once I was trying to explain being still with Jesus to someone and the word that came to mind was "marinate."

My husband swears by the marinating process. He has shown me that even a less desirable cut of meat--meaning one that is tough--can become tender and flavorful if left to marinate. So, even a hard and bitter heart, if soaked in the marinade of Jesusí presence, can become tender and taste like Jesus.

Then, to make this an even more special idea, someone pointed out to me that the word "marinate" sounds like it contains the word "Mary." Marinate is exactly what Mary did. She sat at Jesusí feet and soaked in His presence. Jesus Himself said that only one thing was needed and that Mary had chosen it.

Jesus said something else significant about Mary. When a cut of meat is marinated, that tenderness and flavor become part of it. That tenderness and flavor canít be taken away from it. Jesus said that "Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her." He was saying that He would not be taken away from her. He was her tenderness and flavor and no one could take Him away from her. This is the best of promises.

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