The sky is a deep blue, no clouds in sight. Shirts, jeans, sheets and such perform a merry dance on the clothesline…what a pretty sight!

It has been a joy, for the first time in awhile, tackling the laundry. Standing barefoot, with the little girls handing pins and offering suggestions regarding the placement of a favorite skirt, is quite nice.

The past few days have been full of anxiety and stress. Everyone has been on edge. It was a struggle to get up this morning for the weekday Mass. I had a real “Martha moment” and nearly stayed home. Kneeling in prayer, wishing that Emily would stop squirming, stop asking questions and simply allow me to pray…I realized that sitting there with my children, well, that’s the only place I want to be. When Emily stops squirming and asking questions, then she no longer really needs me. She’ll be too big for my lap and I’ll have all the peace and quiet I can stand…and then some.

So Emily squirmed. And had the hiccups. And needed a tissue. And gave me many, many hugs. She loves Mass. She loves going to Church. God forbid should my desire for perfect peace ever make her feel unwelcome in a place she so dearly loves.

Returning home, breathing in the cool, spring air…I knew that most of the wash would be line-dried today. So I’ve washed. And washed.

I think I’ve been washing away a lot of the anxiety of the past few days, as well. In the meditative action of hanging the clothes to dry, I’ve felt at peace. I’ve been able to watch the little girls circle the driveway on their bikes, Charlotte reveling in the new found ability to ride without training wheels. I’ve listened to the domestic “squabbles” between a couple of robins. I’ve smelled the fresh, clean scent of my laundry, sun-warmed and ready for folding. I’ve had time to reflect and pray.

Perhaps this is why I’ve been so anxious. It’s really all about Martha and Mary.

Luke 10:38-42

Now it came to pass as they were on their journey, that He entered a certain village; and a woman named Martha welcomed Him to her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also seated herself at the Lord’s feet, and listened to his word. But Martha was busy about much serving. And she came up and said,

“Lord, is it no concern of thine that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her therefore to help me.”

But the Lord answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, thou art anxious and troubled about many things; and yet only one thing is needful. Mary has chosen the best part and it will not be taken away from her.”

Martha was always “anxious about many things”. Mary “chose the best part.” Our Lord tells us that “only one thing is needful.” Need I say what that one thing is? To receive Him, to worship, love and adore Him…that is what is needful.

It truly is all about priorities. The Martha part is always easier to accomplish, when we spend a little more time being Mary.