I have come to fall in love with teaching in Catholic schools. What are YOU in love with?...

"Nothing is more practical than finding God, that is, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evenings, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything." - Pedro Arrupe

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

You can call it wonderful...

Those who know me well (or even somewhat well) know that "It's a Wonderful Life" is my favorite movie (and definitely favorite Christmas movie) of all-time. It gets me every time Harry Bailey says, "A toast to my big brother, George, the richest man in town" and everyone bursts into "Auld Lang Syne." Pass the tissues, please.

I'll admit that as I learned more about the Catholic faith, the whole idea of Clarence being an angel did irk me (considering that after we die we believe in becoming Saints, not angels who are separately created beings), but I don't hold that against this movie because I think the message it sends is so very important...and, I mean, who doesn't think of Zuzu's classic line about the ringing bell meaning an angel just made it (wing-wise)?...

"You see, George, you've really had a wonderful life. Don't you see what a mistake it would be to throw it away?"

Wabam! You tell him, Clarence.

This whole idea of being able to realize, first, that each person's life affects others and, second, that each life affects others to both small and large extents that we may never fully realize or understand. It's quite incredible and humbling, all at the same time.

"Comparison is the thief of joy." Ever heard that one? In the age of instant gratification and social media, it's easy to get caught up in what appears to be important and popular when, instead, we should be focusing on that which can't be measured by likes or swipes. Each person's life is, in fact, wonderful, not by comparison to anyone else (for in that it loses its wonderfulness - the grass is always greener, you know?), but just on its own, this "one wild and precious life" (Mary Oliver).

So, thank you George Bailey and Clarence for the reminder that comes (at least to my house) every Christmas - mine (and yours) truly is a wonderful life.

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