Friday, January 3, 2014

My ONE WORD is LISTEN - Random Journal Day Link-up!

Button Design: Melanie
Happy New Year, Dear Readers!

For the last few years I have joined the online trend to "choose" one word (here is another site) that will be a guide or a sort of mini-New Year Resolution for the year ahead. My method is to ask God about it and then wait and see what happens. Most often, it is the first word to pop into my head after I ask Him about it. Aaaand this year, as in other years, I argued about it for a week or so as the old year turned into the new year. Why do I argue with HIM? Doy! 

I recall having a "discussion" with Him about giving me the word "Trust" for 2012 because it felt so passive and I wanted something more exciting and daring. Then last year's One Word was "Embrace" and I think that I did embrace more freedom, more new possibilities in 2013. I believe that this simple little practice makes a difference in how we view the year. That one word can become a good default to go back to when you feel lost or confused. 

SO, this year my ONE WORD is Listen. Once again, it feels like a very passive word. A boring plan that has no bite to it. But I know it is the right word, because even in the first 3 days of this year, it has popped up in front of me twice already. 

-- The other day I was near tears as I washed dishes. No earth-shattering crisis, just very non-global problems that are piling up. I knew it was time to "pull up" or I would begin the familiar downward spiral that leads...well, down! I decided to think about my One Word and put on some music. I randomly hit an unfamiliar name on Pandora and went back to the hot dish pan. 

The sweetest music and voice poured out and into my kitchen! The words "It's Going To Be Alright" made me gasp with relief and thankfulness there in the soapy water. Every phrase was like a soothing balm as I listened. (Sara Groves - Album: Add To The Beauty, Song: It's Going To Be Alright) If I had not listened intentionally to the music, I would have missed the sweet assuring message that I needed. 


-- This morning as I read a new section in "The Artist's Way", the writer said, 

"God as my source is a simple but completely effective plan for living. It removes negative dependency - and anxiety - from our lives by assuring us that God will provide. Our job is to listen for how
One way we listen is by writing our morning pages. At night before we fall asleep, we can list areas in which we need guidance. In the morning, writing on these same topics, we find ourselves  seeing previously unseen avenues of approach. Experiment with this two-step process: ask for answers in the evening; listen for answers in the morning. Be open to all help."


I am hoping to finish my book in 2014 and actually see it published. In order to make that happen I need to listen for HIS direction while I edit, refine and get braver than I've ever been. I cannot do this by myself. I need you, God and people I have not even met yet to help me. I am going to have to get quiet so that I can hear and follow the correct advice. 

So scary!

BUT also so good and exciting and NOT boring! 

---------------


It's the first Random Journal Day link-up of 2014!! Woo-hoo! Thanks to Dawn for organizing this great little gathering of journal scribblers! I love it so much and am so happy that it is continuing into the new year! Click on over, read and add your journalings to the collection! 

--

I picked up a green leather journal from 2007 and randomly let it fall open...The page is full of notes from a guest speaker at our ministry school. The words have been taken to heart and proven true over the years. They have become my own words, my own truth.

"Being a worshiper changes every atmosphere you walk into. Your authority over the atmosphere is more powerful than anything else in the room."

I know this to be true. that's why I write and talk so often about being the one to choose our mood, our attitude. Even though I find myself in desperate moments of depression or fear as described above, I know how to pull up and out. I know that worship is all about looking at HIM. And to look at Him, I must look away from my mess...at least for a moment. 

My lack of worship will lead to depression. I lose any authority I have gained when I neglect pointing my eyes in the right direction. Then the random atmosphere of the things I read and watch will have more power over me than I have over them. A morning of reading stupid comments, articles and rude posts will mess me up because I am allowing the wrong atmosphere to have the power. Can I hear another "Duh!"?? Haha! 

Father, forgive me for slipping into the wrong atmosphere. Thank you for your always-open-arms. You are too good to me. 
I am listening...

Pin It    Like this? Don't forget to SHARE...

21 comments:

  1. I like your word Listen and you can tell I really do cuz that was my word for 2012. To really listen to other people is a blessing to them, and God loves when we listen to Him. I will post about my 2014 word soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's cool Terra. Did it make a difference you think? Looking forward to seeing your word for 2014!
      Susie

      Delete
  2. So true, the last lines about allowing other input to have power. worship would also be a great one word for the year, and I actually pondered that...yet, His ways are not our ways even when they seem good...his ways are supreme, and He deserves full reign!
    Looking forward to all that God has for you and I this year! Hugs!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Dawn. I think that 'worship' has been my LIFE WORD! Ha! I recall feeling like worship was the frosting that I could enjoy AFTER going through my prayer list and devotions. (rules-girl) Then God let me know that my worship was His favorite thing from me! My fun thing got to be my main thing!!

      Delete
  3. I knew "Listen" was going to be something for us all to hear! Looking forward to hearing what God continues to tell you as you listen and share with the rest of us. I needed this message too. Thank you!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes Pam, but it has been a very slow process this time around. I had such a hard time getting this post written! My last post was BEFORE Christmas! Just felt stuck and headaches and internet woes, they all got me down. But I feel so much better now! Needed to get this out I guess. Thanks for reading, dear Pam, I love you!

      Delete
  4. I love that you start with the idea that Listening is passive and get to the truth that it's full of power--to Listen to HIS truth, to worship with Him, to Know what HE wants you to know rather than to slip into your own stuff (being too much in your own head...or is that just me?). This is a GREAT word.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! NO it is most definitely not just you. Being in my own head is THE most dangerous place ever! Ha!
      Susie

      Delete
  5. I can't believe what just happened! When I started my computer, it opened to my Networked Blogs page and had your post about hearing the song "It's Going to Be All Right" .(This was a complete surprise; I had not been on it.) I have been having a very hard week; our pastor announced on Sunday that she is leaving to take a full time job at another church. She is only part time at my church and this is a wonderful opportunity for her. But I am not handling it well. I'm worried about what is going to happen to the church and also to me, since she has been so influential in my spiritual development and my being saved. I have been crying off an on about it every day. But a couple of days ago, the song "Don't Worry About a Thing"("Every little thing's gonna be all right.") popped into my head. I thought this was a sign and I felt a little better; I went from being a hot mess emotionally to just being a mess. Your message, which I probably wouldn't have gotten to for a few days, is reinforcing the idea that God is telling me something. I'm still a mess and I wonder if I'm having a religious experience or a nervous breakdown. But this may help me move on to being just "kind of a mess." Thanks for listening.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Martie, I just love when this kind of thing happens! No, you are not having a nervous breakdown, God is letting you know that everything is going to be alright. I am so sorry to hear about the pain of watching a loved pastor and friend leave. That is so hard. It is ok to feel emotional about a big change like this. God knows your heart is hurting and he is going out of His way to assure you that He cares and has plans for you. Thanks for leaving a comment Martie, it blesses me to know that the post meant something to you.
      Susie

      Delete
  6. I love this post! And each year's word that God gives you is beautiful and something I would eagerly work on and with. My word was Peace for the longest time but now it has been Joy for about 3-5 years.I need to think more about that.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi MC, thanks for coming by! Joy is a great word to focus on, no matter how long. I did a month long focus on "Finding Joy" and it changed my life!

      Delete
  7. Listening is a good word and requires, at least for me, stillness. I'm not very good at either. My phrase this year is Fear Not. So let's both go forth, listen and then move without fear in the direction we are guided. Blessings to you, my friend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good morning Julie! Yes, we can partner up and help one another reach our goals this year. I am so thankful for you and all of your inspiration every day!

      Delete
  8. Be still and know...

    Listening does require a quieting of the mind, body, and soul, which is probably why I'm so bad at it. Listening is not passive, but active. Hearing is passive. I can hear things all day long while focused on something else and they become nothing but white noise. I have to concentrate (focus my attention) when I listen. I have to stop what I'm doing, quiet the mind and soul, and take a moment.

    A very active stance that I support and will also take to heart.

    M.L. Swift, Writer: The Best is Yet to Come

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Mike, this comment is giving me some good things to munch on. A lot of truth in there! Susie

      Delete
  9. Susie: These posts remind me of God speaking to us when we approach Him. When I approach Him to worship, I feel different. I can't really explain it but I know it is authentic worship when it happens. I have found that my chosen word for each year has been an important part of that year. Were you aware of the different levels of listening? I have heard of some professions using the term 'active listening.'

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, choosing a word is a really helpful thing to do. I am looking forward to exploring the many levels of listening this year.

      Delete
  10. I am hearing a lot of words today, really glad for LISTEN. That has so many powerful potential applications!

    ReplyDelete
  11. "Pleasing God Is Simply Not As Hard As You Think"


    Just wanted to say this is wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I'm very late finding your post (and my tribe at One Word), but as I'm making my tour of "tribe members" tonight, I was so happy to find your post - I love Sara Groves, I love that song, I love those God-moments that strike in the middle of washing dishes, and I love that you're reading "The Artist's Way" and finishing your book this year! What a collection of "coincidences" in one post... I'm wanting (but fearful) to start/write my own book, have done the Artist's Way and am slowly savoring my way through The Vein of Gold (which I think I like even better)... just wanted to tap a kindred spirit on the shoulder with this comment and say how glad I am to find you. :)

    ReplyDelete

All comments are good comments!