by Guest Blogger Virginia Lieto
I am a lover of virtue! There I’ve said it! I know that I am in a minority, because most people do not even think about virtue as they traverse throughout their day. I, on the other hand, live for virtue, because it is virtue that draws me near to Christ. I can’t think of a better place to be than near Christ. Maybe that is because I am also a lover of Christ: I want to be like Christ! I look up to Him; He is my role model.
Jesus calls us to be like Him. That is one tall order! Jesus is perfect and without sin. In contrast, we humans, having been born with original sin, struggle our entire earthly lives with a tendency to sin, as a condition of our humanity. Nonetheless, we are called to be perfected, and that happens through the embrace of virtue. For when we embrace virtue, we embrace Christ. That also means that we turn our backs on sin, as Christ and sin are polar opposites.
The virtues are our tools, that when exercised (like muscles), help us to grow closer to Christ. For as we embrace the virtues, we become more Christ-like, and less sinful. As we become more Christ-like, we begin to live happier lives. Who doesn’t want that? I know that I do, and that is why I embrace the virtues to live a happier life.
Think about this for a moment:
- Don’t you love that feeling that you get when you’ve given to the needy; whether it be clothes or food; knowing that someone will get some use out of your clothes, or eat a decent meal because of you? That’s Generosity!
- Don’t you love that feeling that you get when, because of your actions, you have been able to minimize someone else’s suffering? That’s Compassion!
- Don’t you love that feeling of relief that you get when someone else cuts you a break? That’s Mercy!
- How about when someone else helps you out in a pinch? You can’t thank them enough, can you? That’s Gratitude!
Bottom line: Virtue makes us feel good! If you would like to take the first step toward embracing virtue, and move away from sin, to become more Christ-like, then start with a prayer.
Today happens to be the Feast of Saint Anthony of Padua (my favorite Saint). It just so happens that there is a prayer we can all say for St. Anthony’s intercession, on our behalf, asking God to grace us with virtue.
You know how weak I am
and how easily I fall into bad habits.
But I don’t want to be this way.
I know that God is calling me to be a better person.
Please intercede for me to God
so that he might shower his grace upon me.
Show me the way to virtue.
You have now begun your journey toward living a more virtuous, happier life! If you would like to learn more about virtue, then stop by to visit my website.
My thanks to Carolyn for allowing me to guest post and visit with you today.
About Virginia Lieto
Virginia obtained her Master of Arts Degree in Pastoral Theology from Saint Joseph’s College of Maine, where she is now an adjunct professor for the undergraduate online Theology program. She is also a Catholic blogger, dedicated to writing about the virtues at virginialieto.com. Virginia is also a public speaker on the Catholic faith. In her spare time, she writes children’s books centered on three sisters named Faith, Hope and Charity who learn the virtues from their parents. Her first in the series is Adventures of Faith, Hope and Charity – Finding Patience, a 2016 National Indie Excellence Award Finalist for Children’s Religion books. Her second book in the series, Finding Acceptance is in the works. Virginia is also in the process of writing a book on the virtues for those adults seeking to grow closer to Christ. Virginia is a member of the Catholic Writers Guild, as well as the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. You can connect with Virginia on Facebook, Google +, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Goodreads and Amazon.