I don’t follow rules particularly well. I view them as guidelines.
I gave up New years resolutions years ago. Mostly because the ones I chose tended to be lame, temporal and well- I usually failed at them.
- I’ll exercise every day.
- I’ll lose 30 lbs.
- I’ll eat healthier.
- I’ll spend more time with God and the people I love…..
So when I was exposed to the concept of #myoneword I decided to do my own riff on the process.
Last year’s word was “Abide.” It’s been amazing to see the myriad ways God used that word through circumstances, events and challenges. in 2014 I chose to abide. We found a new literal place to abide. (Our cottage-We didn’t see that coming.) I also: struggled to abide.I have clung to the vine like that one last leaf in the fall, that refuses to drop. I clung with all the strength I have to Jesus- I’m quite sure I left a new set of nail scars on him… from my acrylic tipped fingernails. (Sorry, about that- Jesus, kind of. I needed you Lord- thank you for showing up. and letting me hold on so tight.)
For the past month or so, I’ve been hearing that still small voice whisper of 2 words. Hope and Joy. Everywhere I’ve turned- they have shown up. (Yes, I know they are the words of Christmas… but this was something more than marketing. I promise. And I hope:P)
I’ll be honest- these two words scare me. Which sounds crazy. I know. But to be hopeful in the face of bad diagnosis’ and prognosis’ sets us up for potential disappointment. To look for Joy will someday be simple and others will require focus and work. (The cancer center is not a very joy filled place:()
I’m also struggling with a particular area of hope. The hope of a dream realized. A dream that is one of the delights of my heart. A dream from childhood. A dream that gives me daily joy as I practice it while I wait for the day when it’s fully realized.
Honestly- my brain battles between hopefulness and “realistic” goal and expectation setting. I fight to not set my hopes too high. Mostly, because I hate to see them dashed to pieces like that inevitable lone glass ornament that shatters every year as we take down the tree.
I believe it’s a battle between my heart- which hopes and my brain- which doubts. My brain reads statistics, looks at probabilities and calculates odds in creating it’s expectations. (Hopes) (Who knew- apparently on auto pilot my brain attempts math on it’s own. Doesn’t it know I both detest and suck at math? Stupid brain.)
As I’m printing and highlighting verses of Hope and Joy. I hear that still small voice encouraging me to risk more. Listen to my heart more. Tell my brain to shut up- because it’s quite possible that it’s been stealing joy out of my journey.
I believe I’m called for such a time as this. To do the good works God planned in advance for me to do. To love people. To tell the truth. To take the risk of going first so others will follow.
I believe part of that work- involves this dream. That seed I have held in my hand and heart since childhood, The one I’m afraid to plant- because I have such a plant-killing track record that I am the Dr Kervorkian of the botanical world. Plants that want to die- apparently come to me for help. And I assist, like a dark angel. (Or plant slaying demon, I suppose. I’m glad I’m better with humans. Justsayin. I have pretty good track record of keeping them alive.)
I believe this is a year of seeking joy and growing hope. I have no idea what God has in store. But, I hear his whisper. And trust him- even here.
Dear Lord- Honestly? Joy and Hope? I’d have chosen healing and rest. I’m not sure how Joy and Hope will come to fruition in the middle of cancer, and struggles and fear and doubt. Of attempts and frustrations and failures and waiting. (Oh the waiting, Lord….you know how much I love the waiting.) Still. They are your words spoken to my heart, and I embrace them. I will watch for you in all things. I’m excited to see hope and joy grow in believing….. Love you lord amen.
Are you a resolution-ist or a one word person?
Tell me about it in the comments! I can’t wait to hear yours!