A friend of mine introduced me to the concept of choosing a word to live by for the year. She shared how after much thought and prayer, the word “simplify” was laid on her heart last year, so she opened her heart to what “simplifying” would bring to her life. I began to notice she would reference the word often as she made decisions throughout her week. I loved it.
I am not a big goal setter or someone who sets New Year’s resolutions, but I’d like to live more intentionally. Meaning that I don’t want to miss out on life as life goes by, but to live in it more fully, more open, more present.
This year has brought a lot of what I call “heart work” for me. I’ve read a lot. I’ve prayed a lot. I’ve basked in lyrics to my favorite music, my most love hymns. Podcasts are my constant company from warm souls like Brene Brown and Lysa TerKeurst. I’ve let go of a lot after I’ve ached over hurts and mistakes I’ve made. I have meditated and found more space for “me” in my busy day. It’s been a good beginning to where I want to be.
One of the books I read this year was Present Over Perfect, by Shauna Niequist (affiliate). This book opened my heart to areas I need, and want, to work on. She talks about the frantic, busy life that somehow loses soul along the way, and how to work on getting it back. I related to her – not so much her constant travel, book deadlines or weekends at a lake house (yes please!), but her days that were fueled by fear and anxiety, and the difficultly she had with just being “still”. I often lose sight on what is right in front of me, because I’m too busy looking ahead or behind. I have little kids that demand me 24/7, and I haven’t figured out how to set a better tone of calm and contentment for them. I want to. I want to be more present in my world around me. In short, I don’t want to just live, I want to savor my life.
God made it clear to me that this is an area needing growth in my life. So this year, I’m jumping in to 2017 with the word “present” as my word for the year. My heart is open to less busyness, less stress, fewer distractions. My prayer is that through living more present, I won’t miss out on all the beauty around me and that I can completely unwrap the gift of this life that God has laid out for me.
So, are you going to choose a word for the year with me?