It is the SECOND day of 2013 and I sit here in my home staring at the ONE WORD that I
thought, think, believe, know is my focus and standard for this new chapter of life. If each calendar year is a chapter in a life story, I am finishing up my 57th chapter. How do I want to write the 58th chapter?
My mom had only 20 more chapters left at this point in her story. I may live longer or shorter than she, but it gives me a perspective that pulls the big picture into sharp focus, like the half-click of the focus button on my camera. I can click away, recording multiple shots of blurry action, or I can slow down and patiently click the button only half way and allow it to bring the picture into sharp focus and clarity. One sharp picture is worth much more than a dozen fuzzy shots.
This is not a post about being old and facing the final chapter of life. Fifty-eight is not old. (It's NOT!) But the reality is that my story will be what I decide to make of it. How do I want to be "summed up" at the end of my life? This may sound creepy, nevertheless; we are now living the words that will make up our obituaries.
So I stare at this word Embrace. Last year my ONE WORD for the year was "Trust". I needed that reminder last year. I am happy that my word for this year, "Embrace" is about much more than surviving, it will be about moving forward with enthusiasm and purpose.
Embrace is about opening my heart all the way. No reservations, calculations and cautious carefulness. Well, LESS anyway. It is time to stop over-thinking and self-editing so much. I think that God is urging me to stop holding myself back in many areas of life. In small things and big things.
Why not get silly about a holiday like the first day of a new year, even if it is just a day like any other? Why hold back the urge to clap and cheer at the end of a great movie like Les Miserables? Why save "special candles" for some future unknown occasion? Why not let the dog on the couch for some cuddling?
Some of the small-ish ways that this word "embrace" is already impacting my life.
Embrace is an all-encompassing, enveloping word that evokes cozy hugs and inclusiveness. Warmth and acceptance. It makes me think of comfort, openness and love. It is laughing out loud, not just "lol"-ing, but tilting the head back and releasing a true and hearty laugh.
Can someone approaching her 6th decade learn how to loosen up more? To finally allow the scrunched up shoulders to fall and take a deep breath? To uncross the arms and embrace life to its fullest?
Deep breath released, shoulders fall away from the ears....yes.
Thank you Father, for this new year with a new focus and purpose and design. I open my heart and my arms to You and say "Yes Lord". Your strong embrace encircles me as I explore this new freedom that comes from You alone.
I want to send a big "Thank you!" to Melanie at Only A Breath for so generously creating my pretty ONE WORD graphic exactly how I wanted it! The smaller dots at the beginning of the circle that grow as they progress, illustrate how we will grow and change as the year continues. Thank you Melanie!