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From Nuisance to New Sense

What a nuisance! A certain weedy vine kept growing up around the railing of our porch and even through the floorboards. It was heading toward the mailbox mounted on the porch wall near the front door. Persistent vine!
On our walk around the neighborhood the other day, I noticed for the first time a vine growing up the outside fireplace brick chimney. It just looked so lovely, as if some gardener/artist planned it that way.

I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them
bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. (John 15:5)

What a nuisance! I don’t go too far from home during these days of pandemic, so for a change of environment, I go out and quietly read a book on the front porch. I get interrupted so often with people out walking their dogs and stopping to chat. How can I do my reading?
I have made some new friends. I have brightened a lonely lady’s day by listening to her problems. I have met some very friendly dogs.

…love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. (Romans 12:10)

What a nuisance! My husband and I are pretty much stuck at home and are cooking all our meals. All the grocery-shopping and meal-planning we have to do, even if it is just for us. Day after day!
My husband and I have decided to try some new recipes together. Not bad! We have found some interesting television shows about different styles of cooking. We enjoy watching the shows together.

O taste and see that the Lord is good; happy are those who take refuge in him. (Psalm 34:8)

What a nuisance! With some slightly compromising health conditions, I am not safe going to Mass even though the churches have reopened with some restrictions. Here I am at home.
There are masses on YouTube, and some parishes are streaming Masses online. I can watch my parish Mass at home and even surf to other parish websites and enjoy the homilies from other priests I know.

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of
services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is same
God who activates all of them in everyone. (1Corinthians 12:4-6)

What a nuisance! The hair salons had been closed for months. I couldn’t do a good job of cutting or perming my own hair. I had to put up with my roots growing in and my perm growing out!
The salons did eventually open with precaution protocols in place. But the world did not come to an end. Not many people saw me anyway with my problem hair. What is really important?

Do not adorn yourselves outwardly by braiding your hair, and by wearing gold ornaments or fine clothing; rather, let the adornment be the inner self with the lasting beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in God’s sight. (1 Peter 3:3-4)

What a nuisance! All these initialisms to decipher: PPE, PPP, WHO,,,etc.
How about making up spiritually-related initialisms just for some variety and new perspective? BLT could stand for Be Loving Today, LOL could mean Love Others Lavishly, CPR could stand for Christ Purchased Redemption, GPS could mean God’s Perfect Solutions, and PPP could stand for Prayer Produces Peace.
Nuisance or new attitude or new sense of what is really important? What do you think?
Sharon Krause is a RENEW volunteer whose writing has appeared in several resources for small-group faith sharing. She is a wife, mother, and grandmother residing in Manchester, Connecticut. Over the years, she has served in many parish ministries.
Resource: Ignatian
Scripture passages are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright © 1989, 1993 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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