I read a story today of a woman who died yesterday. She had manned a peace vigil outside of the White House for more than three decades. What sacrifice, patience and commitment she must have held for her cause.
At the bottom of the post comments were made to the effect that she was “well-intentioned but to no avail” and “Not a single war was averted or shortened by virtue of her decades-long vigil”. People called her an eye sore and said that it was sad that they let her hang out downtown with “all the junk”.
Sadly, these types of comments should be expected coming from the “fast food” mentality we as Americans have adopted. We want things now and we don’t want to invest in lots of time, work, and money or be inconvenienced.
As a parent I spend 18 plus years (give or take a few) really investing in my children. We teach them to be respectful, honest, kind, to work hard, to be loving and forgiving. I truly only see glimpses of these character traits played out during the years they live under my roof. Will they grow up to be a productive member of society? I don’t know but my questioning this does not excuse my responsibility to the world or themselves when it comes to doing my part.
Every act of kindness, every act of standing up for what is right, every time we see an injustice and say something, we may not know the end outcome but we have surely planted a seed in those watching or those who it directly impacts.
If you do good, you must do it only for God. For this reason you must pay no attention to the ingratitude of people. Expect a reward not here, but from the Lord in heaven. If you expect it here — it will be in vain and you will endure deprivation. St. Ambrose of Optina
Commitment is an old-fashioned idea. Abiding or withstanding without yielding or submitting is what it takes to be a person who bravely does what others will not do. As a Christian we are called to care for the orphans and the widows. We are called to forgive seventy times seven. We are told to pray without ceasing and be patient with the sinner. And we do all of these things with no guarantee of the outcome.
I believe that as we see opportunities to be useful and courageous we should remember Christ’s example ” he made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men; And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even death of the cross.”
May we always remember your perseverance and courage. Memory eternal!