There are so many things that I want to be “more of.” More organized. More calm. More nice after 8 PM (that’s my grouchy time). More thankful. Geez, I sound so boring. Let’s add more fun and more spontaneous to the list!
And there are things I want to be “less of,” like less judgmental and less selfish less “plugged in” and less serious all the time (see “more fun”).
But to get to all those things, I think I need to be at a deeper level of spiritual awareness. When I say “spiritual” here, I mean in-tune with my spirit, that deep place in my soul where I find true meaning. For me, that includes a religious spiritual aspect as well, as my faith interacts with all I believe and do and experience.
So my word for this year is PRESENT.
First, to be PRESENT in all moments of my life. More turning off the TV and engaging in face-to-face activities with my family, and less wasting time on the internet. Aiming to value the
chores things I do rather than complain about them. To redeem my time by filling it with more meaning and less fluff. To pray with consistency. To connect with more people in real time rather than cyber time.
Second, to think of my life as a PRESENT, or gift. Thinking of love as a gift to be given and to receive. Stepping outside of my small world to do something to help others. Considering tasks as small as making the kids’ lunches (which I am SO tired of doing) to be an expression my love for them. I think having this view will definitely help me with the “more thankful” part!
Third, to NOT look at my life as something I have to PRESENT (as in, make a presentation). I’ve always been bad to try to present myself as likable to whatever crowd I’m hanging out with at the moment. I often think about how “it will look” to so-and-so. Even Facebook and Twitter (and let’s face it, this blog) are presentations of me, not the real me. I gotta admit that I use these public places to brag sometimes. I want to be authentically me, not just the me who wants to be accepted. And I may still be discovering who that authentic me is.
So in a nutshell: I want to be PRESENT in my life, which is a PRESENT to me and to the people in it rather than a PRESENTation of something I think people want to see.
Two quotes from poet Mary Oliver come to mind when I am thinking about my word PRESENT:
“What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”
“Instructions for living a life. Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it.”
Friends, I ask you to keep me accountable. If you see me, feel free to ask me how PRESENT is going. And also feel free to suggest books, practices, or ideas to help me on my way! (I’m thinking of reading this book this year.)
What is your one word for 2013? Please share in the comments and share a link if you have a blog post!
Here are a where a few other friends are sharing their one word:
And you can check out hundreds of “One Word” posts – and add yours – here.
My one word is “ordinary.” In preparing to teach a SS lesson on Moses and the burning bush in Exodus 3, I discovered this quote from Macrina Weidekher’s book “A Tree Full of Angels”:
“Holiness comes wrapped in the ordinary. There are burning bushes all around you. Every tree is full of angels. Hidden beauty is waiting in every crumb. Life wants to lead you from crumbs to angels, but this can happen only if you are willing to unwrap the ordinary by staying with it long enough to harvest its treasure.”
I love this. I definitely think you can find the extraordinary in the ordinary! I love that quote, too!
I love all the possibilities in your chosen word. Thank you for sharing it. My one word is “balance”.
Jeanette, that is a great word and something I want for my life as well!
I don’t have a particular word, but I did want to say that the foremost reason I read your blog regularly is because of the honesty. You may feel that you are trying to present something else, but the honesty comes through in spite of it. It reminds me of one verse:
5 And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.
Guile means clever craftiness, or trickery. God’s children will speak honestly and truthfully. The truth they speak is simply what they are. They’re not trying to gain an advantage or some esteem by false representations. And neither do they hold back speaking when injustice or false-dealing is about to happen.
It’s a high aim that the Lord wants to bring us to, but there is great peace in it, because we no longer have to adjust the presentation and try to control it.
Frank, I do aim for authenticity on here. I appreciate you reading and your comments! I do read your blog from time to time also, just haven’t ever commented. 🙂