Domenico Fetti is an artist that created a painting with an interesting image. There is a man standing, pointing his finger at another man seated, and there is this huge beam that looks broken with a tiny splinter at one end in the eye of man standing. The message is clear. The image impossible. How could such a large beam be stuck in an eye? To pick up a piece of lumber that size you would need two strong men. And the beam is so long that no matter how you would try to turn around you are going to hit something. You would think that just by turning your head down this beam would fall out. This leads me to think then that the man does not want to lose his beam. It has become a part of him of which he does not want to part.
The beam could reflect many things. Maybe it is an addiction. Maybe it is a vice. Maybe it is a compulsion to a certain way of behavior. Whatever it is, it is you. And over the years you have become so accustomed to it you no longer see it.
Ignatius developed a self-evaluation program that I think is helpful. At the end of the day ask yourself what went great. Then ask yourself what went wrong. Now how are you going to resolve to do better. It is in evaluating what went wrong we begin to see bits and pieces of this enormous beam. Over time we can whittle it down to a small sliver of wood that then we can pluck out the last piece. In determining what did not go so well I keep one thought in mind. If I am angry or frustrated with someone, I must ask the question what did I do. Getting angry or frustrated implies I am making a judgement of someone. I am in no position to be the judge. But I can judge my own behavior. Am I acting in accord to the Gospel?
May the Lord bless you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen