"The devil is in the details"--an old saying that popped up in various ways as I prepared my sermon for today. A difficult phrase for a detail-oriented person to hear. Theologians, psychologists, and pastors have weighed down today's gospel lesson through centuries of worrying about the details. We can be easily consumed by details, whether in reading scripture, or in our daily lives. They can bedevil us, weigh us down so that we cannot see beyond ourselves.
We don't have time today for details, and so I simply pray that we hear what's at the heart of this reading: relationship with each other and with Jesus Christ. Through this brief story of Mary and Martha, we are reminded to let go of the details, at least enough to focus outside ourselves, to see Christ in our lives, in ourselves, and in each other.
The devil is in the details--when we focus on them to the exclusion of all else, we close ourselves off to Christ. Let us instead chose "the good part," the part "that will never be taken away:" our connection with God's love through Jesus Christ , our Lord and savior, who redeems us despite the details of our lives. Let us be present to Christ in our lives and in ourselves and to each other. Amen.
--given at Trinity Center, Austin, TX