Well, last night someone told me that I was beautiful, but not in the, "oh, you're a young nun, you're so beautiful..." way. It was more in the way that a man tells a woman that she is beautiful. It really caught me off guard because I really haven't experienced that in such an obvious way as a religious before. As a religious I have experienced attractions that come and go but much more subtly.
Anyway, I didn't know what to say and it was super awkward, which I'm sure everyone can appreciate. That kind of awkwardness, unfortunately, happens to everyone.
It doesn't really matter what was said by this man to me or why or how, although it probably wouldn't have made me think so much about chastity if it had been rude or out of order instead of just a genuine compliment. What mattered was what happened in my heart after. I felt so discombobulated and distracted.
I knew that I needed to speak to God about what I was feeling. I prayed a very distracted compline and then I got into bed while still thinking about this interesting conversation I had just had. My normal practice when I get in bed at night is to pray my Rosary (my guardian angel finishes it for me every night!). Nothing spectacular happened except that a peace that transcends all peace relaxed everything in me. I was so moved by this peace that my deepest desire at that moment was to offer all my mixed and uncomfortable emotions about the night for the salvation and peace of the man who caused them to begin with.
I don't know if any of this is making sense, and I hope it doesn't scandalize at all because I am just speaking candidly of the struggles and daily choices all religious experience and make. What happened though was what chastity is all about. I was able in that sacrifice of myself to offer God a soul, to offer Him in prayer this son of His. What an amazing goodness that can come from a real interior struggle. I am just filled with awe at God's goodness to bring this man to me and to allow me to hold him in my heart the way that God would.
One time a very special religious told me that love is a commitment. Commitment is the definition of love. I am young and am still learning but I feel so clearly that God has won a small battle in my heart and in the heart of the one He brought to me last night. Love has prevailed. He is so so so good.