Thursday, April 25, 2013

Charity Begin at Home

“I think it's odd that grown-ups quarrel so easily and so often and about such petty matters. Up to now I always thought bickering was just something children did and that they outgrew it.” 
― Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl

feeling charitable

Saturday my husband and I will fly to Colorado to visit our married children. So we are practicing our Denver manners, that is "charity".

Charity is an attitude of benevolence toward another person. It fosters the the small niceties we should be observing all of the time, but don't. Over forty years of marriage we have institutionalized bickering, minus the heat. 

He leaves open the cupboard doors. I chafe at his negligence and peevishly ask him to please close it. 

I disagree with a political analyst on the news and he launches his opinion into my air space before I've finished. 

We disagree with each other about inconsequential things, ad nauseum.

I realized how nauseating our behavior is when a close family member commented on it.  Caught in our rude ways, now we try harder to:

  1. Let it drop. Every comment does not need a rebuttal.
  2. Listen longer, interject later.
  3. Ask more questions.
  4. Show regard for each other.

It is a sad fact that we have allowed discourtesy to become a habit, fed by uncharitable attitudes. But I have a plan to counteract it.

First I've had to repeatedly admit that my self-seeking is displeasing to God, my husband and others who observe it. I further ask the Holy Spirit to enable me to change, to develop charity. Then I strive to follow St. Paul's instructions to only say what is helpful, what benefits others. 

When we catch ourselves sliding back into petty fussing, we murmur "Denver manners!" 

I hope we live long enough to see charity push bickering out of our lives. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Readers, I have changed a setting which should make it easier to leave comments. Please try again so I can determine if it works or not. Thanks.