The phrase “pondered it in her heart” struck me twice today. The first time was at Mass this morning. I’m not sure whether it was something Father said during the reflection on the Gospel or if it just popped into my head; the second time was just now when I was listening to episode 2 of The Catholics Next Door’s “rebooted” podcast and Jennifer spoke those words.
I stopped listening midsentence (the great thing about podcasts is that you can hit that PAUSE button and then come back to it later) because I needed to think about this.
In Luke’s Gospel, Mary is described as “pondering these things in her heart” (Luke 2:19). When that phrase first caught my attention this morning, I started thinking about the things I ponder in my heart.
For the most part, they’re not the good things. They’re not the happy things. Is it because I am a glass-half-empty kind of girl? The things I ponder, the things I dwell upon in my heart, are the troubles big and small that I allow to consume my attention, steal my focus and determine my mood.
Right now, there’s a whole lot on my plate. Some are things I can’t fix, like my husband’s health. Some are things I find myself blaming others for, and we won’t get into those in this space. I’m carrying a lot of resentment around right now, and that’s sucking the life out of my ability to be a good wife, mom, family member and friend. My plate is full, and my heart is full–and for the most part, my heart is not filled with good things.
I was sweeping and washing the floor this afternoon; it was so easy to clean up the dirt that had gathered in the corners and under the chairs. If only it were that easy to clean the corners of my heart, where I have allowed resentment and anger to fill up the space that should be full of good thoughts.