Nails on a blackboard….

“….I saw only too well how very imperfect was my love for my Sisters; I did not really love them as Jesus loves them. I see now that true charity consists in bearing with the faults of those about us, never being surprised at their weaknesses, but edified at the least sign of virtue.”

The Hidden Face by Ida Gorres, p. 240

Today I had to deal with someone whose total self-absorption gives me that nails-on-a-blackboard feeling. They frequently seek me out to relate their most recent trials and tribulations, which they deem to trump any that others will ever have to bear. Never is there an inquiry as to how I am doing, and if I happen to mention any of my problems, I am met with deafening silence. This goes on regularly, and my association with this person is such that I cannot avoid these encounters.

I am grateful as always for the wisdom of Therese, which makes me look beyond the surface. I know that this is a wounded person, and that they probably need the attention. As for me, should I really be seeking sympathy from others?

When I truly need it, I’m sure the Lord will send it. But most often, I believe He loves us to turn to Him for comfort, rather than to fellow creatures. I know that he permits us to be rebuffed to whittle down our pride, and remind us to be willing to suffer our little travails for love of Him.

And I try to remember always, that Our Lord often permits us to see the faults of others, so that He may use them to perfect us in virtue. As I struggle to smile, to listen and to truly care when I seem to receive nothing in return, I love to think that a tiny seed is taking root in my soul, and may someday produce a beautiful bloom for Jesus.

And is that not what Therese is obsessed about after all:   to love Him and make Him more loved!

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2 thoughts on “Nails on a blackboard….

  1. Beautiful post, Patricia, thank you. It always helps to remind myself that St. Therese was a sensitive creature who realized that sharing our trials with others was like “taking a days’ wages and throwing them into the fire”. In her words, “you feel this pain so acutely because no one is aware of it.” I sometimes think the greatest sacrifice I can make is to suffer in silence.

    • I love the quote about throwing a day’s wages into the fire. I don’t remember that one. It’s so typical of Therese to get right to the heart of the matter. Isn’t it interesting how difficult it is to be silent about
      our own suffering, espeically when others are going on and on? Ouch! I have to bite my tongue. But you are right, silence is the greatest sacrifice. Tough though! But we keep trying…..

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