Hard days are made harder when they’re not confronted with virtue.
When everyone is feeling sick or stressed or overwhelmed and I choose not to respond with charity and patience, everything falls apart that much more quickly and dramatically. Feelings are hurt, problems are left unsolved, and the general aura of chaos and disarray multiplies.
When the general pattern of our life is difficult for a season, and our margins are essentially nonexistent, and we’re all pushed to the breaking point, and I choose not to respond with hope but rather react with bitterness and resentment, I add to the struggles we face, and push our family apart instead of drawing it together. We remain blinded to the beauty and blessings that we do have to enjoy, and let the hardships dominate our thoughts and emotions.
When I’m utterly exhausted and the baby wakes up that one last time, like the straw on the camel, and I choose not to respond with gentleness but rather with a sharp voice and rough hands, neither of us end up sleeping well, and our relationship is wounded. The peace of the night is shattered by my selfishness and it takes an extra effort to restore it.
Virtue isn’t easy, but it’s almost a necessity at times like these, because a lack of it is so much harder to deal with in the long run.