This photo taken years ago in Petra reminded me of something I highlighted in one of Joan Chittister’s books.
“To be able to face the difficulties of our lives, to admit them and resolve them instead of trying to swallow them in a cauldron of muffled anger, may be the greatest gift we can give those we say we love. It certainly beats resenting them for the rest of our lives and punishing them secretly for doing what we never told them not to do.” Joan Chittister, O.S.B.
This photo taken through an ancient doorway could represent the doorway to our hearts and what happens if we keep swallowing our challenges vs. facing them. Note the stark rock fissure (withered over many years in Petra.)
Can you imagine a heart fissured like that?
That’s the point of the quote: not to let anger fissure our hearts but to face up to ourselves, take ownership of our bads, & move toward resolution with the ones we love.
“I was wrong. I am sorry. Will you forgive me?”
Resentment often festers like a dark winter storm in summer when we don’t share what’s up inside us.
If your loved one or friend Gets On Your Nerves when he, she, they do x or y, and you’ve never said “Please, I am allergic to your cat crawling all over me,” instead suffering the consequences resenting “why do they always make me play with their cat?”
Maybe it’s time to Be Honest.
“I am allergic to your cat…”
There, not so bad. It’s not their fault you’re allergic, but if they don’t know (because you haven’t told them) how does resentment build up that relationship?
Something to think about, that open honesty strengthens our relationships so we can face whatever’s on the horizon, together.
Virginia : )
p.s. Quote taken from Joan Chittister’s book, The Radical Christian Life – a Year with Saint Benedict. For more about her many (wonderfully amazing) books, check out her website: www.JoanChittister.org