I missed the first week of this exciting series at The Practicing Catholic because I was on the road, but it’s never too late to jump on board and get started. I have to say, typical Lent for me…I can’t get my act together until Holy Week, and then it’s Easter and…well…enough about that.
Lisa Schmidt explains the concept at her blog, where she’s hosting 40 days of soup recipes, and stories to go along with them. What a great idea, right?
I mean, who doesn’t love soup? And who doesn’t love a story.
I don’t want to steal her thunder, so click on the logo and read her explanation, catch up on the few posts you might have missed, and check back here in a few weeks, cuz guess who’s got an entry coming up?
That’s right, lil ole me.
This week’s photo challenge is abandoned.
That’s a powerful word, something that evokes a sense of despair for me, and so I am loathe to apply it to any persons. Yet here I am, posting this picture that I took on a whim while waiting for a friend to come out of a store.
I’ll never make it as a photo-journalist because I can’t bring myself to take this kind of picture. Yes, I know, I did in fact take this picture, and then post it, but I’m going to confess, it is not without a great deal of discomfort.
Let me explain. I’m not discomfited by the poor, nor the homeless. On the contrary, more and more I find myself drawn to them with more compassion than I’ve had in my whole life up to now. Is it Christ working in me? No doubt, although I do not know to what end.
To the person reading the title of this post and looking only at the photo, the message might be that the person captured in the photo is abandoned. I don’t know this. I do know that the photo is an intrusion…I’ve broken his peace for the sake of an internet game, and I almost didn’t use it after all. But then I got to thinking. This man, while seemingly abandoned by society … Has not been abandoned by God.
Perhaps that’s what my purpose is here, to draw attention to his humanity in spite of my preconceived notions. Because, in failing to see his human dignity, I would be the one abandoning my own humanity.
But don’t follow up with this.
I’m hanging out at CatholicMom with a post about my parish’s annual medical mission to Haiti. They are there right now so first, send up a prayer for the success of the mission, and then follow this link to read my post.
No. Not really. I just totally made that up.
But do it anyway.
I had a little fun on Facebook yesterday which turned into a weird and awkward (for me, anyway) incident of fishing for compliments, which wasn’t my intent, but oh well, who can control what happens on those status updates. You know what I’m talking about — the deep and prosaic stuff gets crickets — the reckless inane crap get a bazillion likes and comments. And food. And babies. And puppies.
Yesterday, in two totally unrelated incidents, I was told I was awesome by two totally different people. By totally, I mean, the only thing they have in common is their humanity. Which is a lot, let me tell you, but that’s not the point. Or maybe it is.
It got me thinking about Pope Francis and his message to stop gossiping. Have you been following that? I’m loving it — he’s asking us to love our neighbor, and tearing them down isn’t very loving, now, is it?
Guilty as charged. Boy, I’m feeling his kindly eyes on me telling me to watch my tongue.
So back to awesome yesterday. I think the reason I was so tickled by it is because I know the persons well enough to be secure in their sincerity. It meant something to me.
What would happen if instead of tearing people down (and ourselves, by the way) with a sharp tongue and ugly gossip, we spread around a compliment or two? Make sure it’s authentic. Make sure the person on the receiving end knows you mean it.
You I might create a better habit.
The view from my office this morning shows a bowl of pears, a candle, and a flower (the traditional elements), along with my almost finished latte and journal, and then … Random crap on my table… Some seeds, a bag of apples, lightbulbs, a bottle of drain cleaner. And caulk.
Because who couldn’t use a little caulk.
I feel like Rembrandt.
No. Not really. I don’t even feel like Andy Warhol.