Yes, life activities are worrisome. On Sunday Christ spoke to us about letting to do’s govern our lives. We heard this Gospel from Luke 10:38-42:
Jesus entered a village where a woman whose name was Martha welcomed him. She had a sister named Mary who sat beside the Lord at his feet listening to him speak. Martha, burdened with much serving, came to him and said, ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me by myself to do the serving? Tell her to help me.’ The Lord said to her in reply, ‘Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.’
Don’t you think we can easily sympathize with Martha? At one time or another, we are like Martha overwhelmed by all the activities of our lives. We find ourselves trying to do what everyone else expects. We are going in many directions and then we become irritable, resentful and angry.
Christ’s gentle rebuke was for anxiety and distraction that can lead to a separation from our spiritual life. He is telling us to balance our activities by adding prayer and Scripture with serving others. Surprisingly, when we add balance to our lives foolish anxiety vanishes.
Next time you find your day driving you crazy, give yourself a break. Take a deep breath and remember Our Lord’s rebuke. Then turn to this prayer of trust composed by St. Teresa of Avila:
Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing;
God only is changeless.
Patience gains all things.
Who has God wants nothing.
God alone suffices.
Image: Alessandro Allori (1535-1607), Christ in the House of Mary and Martha, 1578-1580. Oil on panel. Palazzo Portinari-Salviati, Florence.