But Jesus' visit to Mary and Martha wasn't a special occasion or even a dinner party. Jesus was only around for three years and how many days in those three years did he spend with Mary and Martha? Unless I am very mistaken, I imagine just being in Jesus' presence and listening to him teaching would have been the most exhilarating experience one could hope to encounter, but Martha could not see this as she was possibly so used to doing things her way and expecting people to fit in with her ideas. Capable people can be like that. And, Martha was probably used to Mary helping, otherwise why would Martha be fuming out in the kitchen?
However, this time Mary could read the situation - Jesus wanted their company and needed to talk with them about God matters. They didn't realise it, but he wouldn't be around for much longer.
Jesus' comments to Martha are a timely warning for all of us, but especially to those who consider that they have all the answers, or most of them anyway. It is so easy to feel smug or even judgemental towards those whose opinions differs from ours, but try 'standing in their shoes' or viewing life from their point of view.
That is what Martha needed to learn. Instead of organising Jesus' visit around her ideas, she needed to first stop and think what Jesus would have wanted.
Learning to 'read' people or seeing things from their point of view, even if we don't agree with them, makes for a much more tolerant and caring society.