Liv's Life

Liv's blog on changemaking, travel, and faith in search of true beauty

  • Olivia R. Colombo

Do Something Beautiful.

As many of you know, next Sunday I will be running my first 10K for Run for Dana-Farber. I’m very excited, but it’s been a challenge training for more reasons than I anticipated. During cross country I chatted with friends, when I ran 5Ks alone I listened to a playlist of music, but very quickly I realized that running 6.2 miles gets boring. Fast. Very fast. Even my Matt Maher and Chris Tomlin playlist fails to keep my attention for an hour while I’m pounding on the pavement. Thus, I’ve found a solution, and I've adopted the hobby of listening to podcasts while I run, and I can say that it is not only entertaining, but also educational, in the most wonderful and fulfilling way.

So while I’m keeping up with Matt Fradd’s Pints with Aquinas and Neil Negrasse Tyson’s Startalk Radio, I remembered that one of my favorite Catholic speakers, Leah Darrow, has a new podcast. Leah, an inspirational human being who used to be a supermodel but now has realized her full beauty in God, started a podcast appropriately entitled, “Do Something Beautiful.” This alludes to a powerful quote from Mother Teresa, so powerful and humble (is that an oxymoron??) that I nearly tripped over my feet while running, which happens a fair bit more than I’d like to admit but that’s beside the point…

"Do something beautiful for God. Do it with your life. Do it everyday. But whatever you do, just do it." -St. Mother Teresa

Reading this quote immediately makes me smile. This humble, strong, feisty, holy, and beautiful little saint captured it so perfectly. Just a few days ago I was conversing with my spiritual director about words of wisdom that I’ve taken from Dr. Jane Goodall in the numerous times that I’ve been blessed to meet her and hear her speak as an NYLC member. She always stresses that if we look at of ALL the problems in the world, we will become depressed, overwhelmed, and discouraged. We should pick our little corner, and focus everything we have on making a difference with every action we take, no matter how small. I drew synthesis between her outlook, and Mother Teresa’s idea of “find your own Calcutta.” Start in your own community, start now. Don’t get discouraged when you see how many people are starving in the world, just feed as many as you can and let them see the light of Christ through you. Be hope to as many people as you can, don’t aim for millions. Start with making a difference in one person’s life. This reminds me of a Ralph Waldo Emerson quote that an unforgettable teacher read to me while presenting me with a citizen of the year award in middle school. It goes like this: “...To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”

Every step that we take, big or small, is changing the world. Positive or negative, no action is without an impact. My favorite quote from Dr. Jane is, “What you of makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” One of my New Year’s resolutions (in addition surviving the 10K next week) is to realize that every good deed, regardless of size or impact, is a prayer to change this world for the better. I aim do something beautiful for God, and I hope that you will join me.

Thank you to everyone who continues to support me in all of my endeavors. I’m so thankful for all of you.

Totus Tuus.

God bless,