Virtue, Charity, and Other Pursuits

Posted by on Oct 14, 2017 in good for the soul | 2 comments

Virtue, Charity, and Other Pursuits

The Objective

I aspire to a life of virtue. I want to be holy.

I know what I need to do; the problem is that I don’t always act on what I know.

Most of the time I operate in fits and starts. I buy a new moisturizer that promises the fountain of youth, and I use it for three days and remember to use it again when I take a too-close selfie.

A great swell of enthusiasm takes me to daily Mass several days in a row, only to sleep in on the fifth day and miss the goal of going all week. I lose track of a novena somewhere along the fourth or fifth day. My mind wanders to a to-do list during a homily.

I often think there’s no way I could possibly tackle the Works of Mercy if I can’t even get through a homily. And no, it isn’t the priest’s fault (most of the time).

A recent visit with a dear friend blessed me with some great conversations about a number of things, including our pursuit of virtuous lives. We came to the conclusion that we need to work at it, need to approach it with love, and need to take baby steps for successes. We need to move with our hearts:  charity for others, and for ourselves, too.

We came to that conclusion pretty easily. I mean, that when we got to the conclusion, it felt right. And then I remembered this:

That’s my friend in the video — and I wrote the script. LOL, no wonder we came to such a brilliant conclusion.

The Plan

Every morning I wash my face, moisturize, and put on my halo-in-training nice and straight. It usually slips by the time I get to the kitchen for coffee if the dog is underfoot and I step on him. I say my prayers and spend a little time journaling. It often leads me to do a little reading about the saints.

I read a lot and write a lot, kind of like Flannery O’Connor — to figure out what I think. So why do I write so much about the saints? Because sometimes I see a little bit of myself in them, the struggles they have, and their yearning for Christ. I really do want to be holy.

And why do I keep moisturizing if the crow’s feet have sprouted into yards?

The simple answer is hope. I hope I can keep the dry spots and blemishes at bay.

I hope I grow in virtue. I put my hope in the Lord. In my salvation. In my ability to get better each day, even if it’s just keeping the halo on straight through that first cup of coffee.

Know what helps? Frequent reception of the sacraments — go to Mass. Go to Confession. Rinse. Repeat.

And moisturize!

Some Fun Stuff

Listen to Jennifer’s insights on Adventures in Imperfect Living

Watch the other episodes of That Catholic Show

And tell me, do you think the Super Girl on the cover of my book looks like Jennifer’s Super Girl in the video?




  1. Great show! I think we all want to be virtuous in our daily walk. Like you I am lucky, if I make it to the cup of coffee without a slip up, but that’s the point. God knows that we are an imperfect broken people. Dying on the cross didn’t fix us in the present rather it paved the way for our salvation – even if we can’t make it past the coffee without falling, again. I do my best to lead a virtuous life, but I do have my failings and I do have my blemishes, we all do. Have a great Sunday and a wonderful week.

    • Yes, that how I feel about it! Thanks for dropping by.

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