Pondering in my Heart

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.

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5 thoughts on “Pondering in my Heart

  1. I will continue to keep you all in my prayers. I think when we find ourselves pondering upon things that are not "the good things" we need to consciously make ourselves get into a new groove of thinking, not always an easy thing. For the most part I see the glass as half full but there are times I really have to force myself to see it that way :)Blessings to you,Bean

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  2. {hugs} I know what you mean; I tend to ponder the negatives, too. I confessed resentments for quite a few weeks/months for a while. It's better now, but I still pray for Joy all the time.

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  3. I also tend to "ruminate" on the negative–and find myself doing this more often as I get older. Each day I determine to focus on the positive, to be less critical in my mind–and it lasts only until someone annoys me. I guess the idea is to keep trying. I keep telling myself that this is the wonderful part of Francis' idea of ongoing conversion!

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  4. I think we all have seasons of this. I hope your season is short. It always helps me to ponder those who have it worse, but after this election I am even having a difficult time doing that. I'm with ya, sister.

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  5. A priest once told me that when I was having a hard time forgiving someone, or when I couldn't stop ruminating on the thing they did that made me so angry, that I should pray for the Lord to bring that person to greater heavenly glory than He would bring me to. Father said that every time the situation popped up in my head and I felt myself get angry, I was to stop immediately and offer that prayer for that person. It took a little while but I was no longer angry with that person.

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