Wannabe Martha

Still trying to figure out which Martha

‘Tis Lent

But that’s not news.

I haven’t had much to say lately largely because I’ve been in a near-perpetual state of annoyed; and an annoyed Maeve should stay away from the keyboard.

Nevertheless, I wanted to share some little Lenten tidbit, because, well it’s Lent and I’m Catholic (I realize that’s a crappy reason to want to post something, but there you have it).  Nothing’s actually coming to me, so I figure I’ll just share some little commentary from my second-fav Catholic Blog, The Crescat:

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/thecrescat/2015/02/look-at-me-im-so-holy-with-my-ashes-and-my-fasting.html

(For anyone wondering, my very fav is Happy Catholic)

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St. Martha’s Feast Day

I don’t generally wax religious here (for a number of reasons), but Julie over at Happy Catholic has posted a truly lovely piece honoring her patron Saint.

If you’re so inclined, do pay a visit and enjoy her reflections. I found it a wonderful way to start this day.

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Nice Ain’t Kind

The girls and I attended the Easter Vigil Mass this past Saturday night.  Of course it was beautiful and uplifting in every way.  We sang my absolute favorite hymn,”O Filii et Filiae” (well, it’s tied with “Salve Regina”, but they’re both so beautiful, I can’t elevate one over the other) and Iseult managed to not catch her hair on fire (don’t ask).

Anyhoo, I found my mind wandering a little bit (I know…I know..) during the baptisms, to thinking about “nice” and “kind”.

You know what?  I don’t really care about “nice” – it’s just a bland synonym for “pleasant”, which is a far better word anyway.  Thing is, “nice” and “kind” are often used interchangeably with regard to people.  And that’s a mistake.

To be “nice” all you have to do is use your manners (or learn some if you don’t have any) and basically adopt a fairly milquetoast (or at least non-confrontational)  attitude and Voila – nice is done.

Kindness, on the other hand, is a tough quality to cultivate.  It is fueled by compassion, empathy, generosity, and often, forgiveness, as well as humility.  It also requires mercy, which I think is one of the single most underrated virtues and one of the hardest to live out – and therein lies the rub, because mercy requires an understanding and acceptance  of one’s own failings.

I really have no interest in being a nice person.  “Nice” is easy but ultimately barren.  Kindness, that’s something worth striving for because it affects others in a positive manner.  It’s a quality worth developing and I’m going work on that.

Does this mean I’m about to turn in a dour old sourpuss, incapable of appreciating inappropriate T-shirts and delete the Eminem tunes from my MP3 player?

Uh, not!  But I’ve been wrapped up in a hard cold battle, full of resentment and pain and anger and hurt for a long time and it’s taken a terrible toll on me.  Sure, I’m still nice enough.  That’s nothing to be proud of.  I can do better.

 

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