Simple Joys

Loveliness_button"So it is in the world of souls, the living garden of the Lord. It pleases Him to create great saints, who may be compared with lilies or the rose; but He has also created little ones, who must be content to be daisies or violets nestling at His feet to delight His eyes when He should choose to look at them. The happier they are to be as He wills, the more perfect they are." St. Therese

I have a confession to make. As much as I love roses, I think I might be a daisy or a violet. I'm a hardy type, maybe even a weed in some circumstances:-). This year, I'm focused on simplicity and clarity of purpose. Why are we here and what is the most important thing we should be doing? Mary Chris asked about a theme for the year. I have two (ok, so maybe that contradicts the whole simplicity thing;-). The first was handed to me the day our family made its consecration: This is all I desire: to be where God wants me to be.

Have you noticed that God puts daisies and violets in some very unglamorous places? I think that St. Therese was talking to mothers when she observed that some of us are called to be daisies and violets. If I am a violet, I want to be a good one, right here where God planted me. I also want to be aware that God's burden is easy and light. If I am doing what He calls me to do, I will not stagger under the weight. It's other people's expectations that might burden me, not God's. So, the other theme is Good enough is the new excellent. Is it good enough for God? That's excellent.

Less than a decade ago, I used the computer for basic word processing of a humble magazine and the regular contribution of a column to the Catholic press. I faxed and I delivered via mail (or courier if I was running late). I did not have internet access. When I finally did get online, I was delighted to discover a small but growing community of holy women, striving to help each other answer God's call. We grew together and we encouraged each other along the way. That world has gotten absolutely huge. And in many ways, it has blessed me abundantly. Sometimes, though, it makes life more complicated. So many good ideas. So many beautiful pages of roses in this computer. Where is the humble daisy among the grandeur?

Colleen and her men came to visit me just before Thanksgiving last year. We had a rare opportunity to truly touch one another. To exchange a hug after months of emails. And we had a chance to begin and to continue conversation. Internet friendships are precious. In many ways, they require the care and cultivation of prize roses. The climate is not always conducive to fragile growing. One thing that struck us both is that we need online communities to be places of safe harbor and encouragement in simple holiness. So, in thinking and praying about this year's loveliness fairs, we came again and again to the idea that we needed to focus on simple holiness. We need to aspire to be daisies and violets. We needed to encourage one another to daisies and violets. Loveliness, particularly Marian loveliness, is our goal certainly. But we want clarity of purpose. Our loveliness must be humble, simple, and holy. And we want to encourage one another in those goals. Won't you join us?

Visit Colleen for all the details of Simply Lovely Fairs 2008.