Like most people, I get all wrapped up in the romance of a new year. It feels fresh and clean and opportunity-laden; a little pink cheeked year all scrawly and ready to be filled up with all the things. I wrap my year up in hopes and dreams and the resolve to be a better version of myself.
This year I am letting go of being a better version of myself. Instead I am setting goals that I hope will lead me to begin to live out of God’s love for me. The truth is that I often try to drum up the wherewithall and gumption to be better and lovely and liked and good from other things: approval, acceptance, conformity. These all lead to comparison and competition and, well, a fissure-covered heart that can’t seem to hold onto anything worthwhile. Also, I get stuck. Stuck in fear. Stuck feeling ashamed. Stuck in avoidance.
I’ve been working through this process as I reflect and redirect and I’d love to honor what the Lord has been writing on my heart over the last year.
God knows even the tucked away, unnamed dreams we harbor. I’ve taught classes. I’ve shared a message with the women of my church. I’ve led workshops. I’ve met you all here. All these things, I never would have been able to verbalize a dream toward. But when I’ve stood in these pockets, I’ve felt closer than ever to my 17 year old self sprawled on a floral comforter and scribbling words in a composition notebook. This is a dream I never would have named, but it appears I have always had a heart communicate with others.
I need a plan. As much as my right-thinking bent brain revolts against straight lines and lists, I need to be intentional and thoughtful. I don’t want to serve lists or try to squeeze grace out of dry-lived performance but I do want to be engaged and unstuck. Inspired by my friend, Hayley, I’ve begun making some realistic goals for each month and even though I’ve written “Make a chore chart” for two months now, I do see that I am making more progress in my daily living and finding more joy in being a servant in my home.
I want to be sensitive to my distractions. More and more, I am feeling convinced that we are being paralyzed by all of the information rushing around us. There’s a trade off: the more time I spend gathering status updates, beautiful pins and 20 ways to be better, the less I am actually doing and being. There is room for inspiration and I don’t mean to imply that information is inherently bad. But. Information is not truth and inspiration dies when it becomes prescription. I feel compelled to become more and more discerning about the quality and quantity of the voices and stories I allow into my life.
I am a writer. This is still a descriptor I find hard to clack out on keys. And I don’t apply it based on any perceived skill level I think I have. I just find life in words and I love to meet you here, invite you in and extend “Me, too.” My mind is constantly churning and processing and it is freeing to look for the Lord’s hand and sort things out in words and find out that I am not alone. I feel a heart for you and my words are the way to get there.
2013 was a full and beautiful and hard-fought and slow and jumbled and everyday-filled year. What about you? Would you share something God has been writing on your heart?