Allegory of Charity by Zurbarán

It must have been my fatigue.

Not that we did anything mentally vigorous today in our teacher training.. We were introduced to new virtual learning management system today. People spoke while I leisurely tried intuiting the platform. It was an easy, second day back, but by the time 3p rolled around, fatigue fractured my focus, and I suddenly regretted staying up until 2a (my husband and I are are still trying to squeeze out every ounce of summer before my students arrive in late August.)

As I closed my laptop for the day, though, in a matter of moments, I was in tears. Not out of sheer exhaustion, but because of an unexpected movement of my soul.

Here’s a little trinity of what impacted me and why..

1. Being moved to write. For myself.

I’ve kept up my commitment (for an entire 3 days) and I am genuinely excited about carving out that time to sit down, think, and write. I have a system, I have the zeal of not wanting our Catholicism to vanish into the ether of zeitgeist, and I have begun rallying other creatives, a movement beyond myself.

Doing for beyond me is God’s secret, you see. If I cannot find the motivation to write for myself, I can still find the root of believing every Catholic should write – if not a pseudo-Thomastic tome, then holy letters to their children.

We must do what the saints did, and leave a permanent legacy of our love of God for those to come.. try to bring as many of us as possible to heaven before Christ’s return.

God is sustaining weak me, may I glorify Him, if only by these dinky writing sites I keep popping up.

2. Being followed by Lesley Clinton.

My driving throughout the day was – I’m a writing teacher. I move the hearts of students in my classroom, I know this. How am I supposed to harness this love and energy for language and teach this through a screen?

Support for my brand of teaching is scant, because I take a wholistic approach of supporting the student writer – through love, through connecting with their hearts, minds & souls. This takes work. Thinking of kids & teaching methods beyond the classroom.

To top this off, I’m ooze Catholic.. sometimes spoken, but mostly a patient, intent waiting for the right moment to love.

To thee have I lifted up my eyes, who dwellest in heaven. Behold as the eyes of servants are on the hands of their masters, As the eyes of the handmaid are on the hands of her mistress: so are our eyes unto the Lord our God, until he have mercy on us.

Psalm 122/123: 1-2

Before we were released for the day, the weight of a barren, remote learning environment was upon me.

But then when I checked my new followers on @divinemirror to follow them back, I found Ms. Clinton, educator and writer!

Lesley Clinton and her chapbook, Calling the Garden From the Grave, published by Finishing Line Press:
This slender volume utilizes language to uniquely stamp this writer’s vocation, her multi-faceted ‘calling.‘”

What inspiration! Lesley pursues the art of language she loves and dives deeply into her poetic craft in the pursuit of holiness.

To be one degree removed from a fellow teacher with these values! What a gift!

God takes care of His little ones. He knows when we are near the limits of our patience, when our minds are weak and approach despair. He affirms us, lest we lose sight of our vocation and the pursuit of His Holy Will. Glory to God in in infinite Wisdom.

3. Seeing Agnus.

I have no image to show you.. only the memory. May my words do her Justice..

My palm mindlessly pressed my laptop closed, slowly, even as my last page of artful inspiration was loading.. so tired was I.. when a glimpsed Innocence.

It was a portrait of St. Agnes inclined on a small hill, gently caressing a lamb who returned her loving gaze. Her mauve and red robes draped the ground before her, a perfect image of sanctity that mirrored the love of God in His saints.

O, how St. Agnes struck my soul.. I wept. Why, I cannot tell you.. There was a swirl of love, peace, unknowing, hope.. in a word, God.

***

Long story short, pinterest reloaded and I lost the image. I am placing this here to remember her.

Santa Inés by Guarino

I searched, my friends.. I will continue to search. When I find her, you will know it. Until then, lovingly reflect on Baby Jesus..

Infant Christ Sleeping by Murillo

His resting, having finally found refuge from the heat of the desert in a peaceful soul. What this image evokes is similar to what I experienced with St. Agnes; this image is the flipside of her’ portrait.

God knows the hearts of his little ones. How hard & withered, small & bitter I have allowed it to become. He has allowed me to experience my annihilation, that I may know I absolutely, totally, and infinitesimally nothing, without Him.

I must nurture my own heart and keep it supple, refrain from ways the devil likes to particularly tempt me, lest I develop callouses over my path to The Fountain and lose my way. I must keep my heart pure, maintain my poverty of soul, that my Beloved and Savior may enter my empty chamber and touch my soul when He choose, at His good pleasure.

My King, be my strength, for I have none.

AMDG.

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