Alive: Checking In
This month’s One Word linkup is a three-month(ish) check-in. Well, Alive is still inspiring me and remains very applicable!
When I chose Alive, I knew it would mean dealing with negative emotions I’ve tried to sweep under the rug. Even after working on it for many years, I still feel guilty about feeling angry or discouraged. Especially since most of my anger and discouragement falls into one of two categories: things I can’t do much about, or things prompting me toward actions with problematic outcomes. Like many other Christians who bought the self-denial package early on, I tend to dismiss these feelings while reproaching myself to have a better attitude. Last year I realized that in the process of shutting myself off from negative emotions, I was also hardening my heart. My emotional range was narrowing quickly. It scared me, because God made me sensitive for a reason, as a gift, not to torment me. I’m convinced that to fulfill my purpose on this earth (whatever it is) and find happiness, I need to be fully myself and fully open to God and life. Opening the door to all that, accepting the messiness of it, was my main motivation for making Alive my word. Well, let’s just say it’s working. It’s not fun, but I keep reminding myself that it’s far preferable to being a well-behaved robot.
I think about my word almost every day. It’s especially easy lately, with the black-and-white starkness of winter giving way to a Technicolor nature cartoon. Alive is all around me. Even the knowledge that I’ll have to start mowing soon doesn’t dampen my excitement about the grass greening up. After this Longest Winter Ever, when I notice a new flower or tree in leaf, something in me relaxes. I feel more alive just because the world is too. I also remember my word whenever I wear my chai necklace.
Overall, I know Alive is the right word for me. I don’t feel that it’s disappointed me, so far, but sometimes I feel like I’m disappointing it. There’s so much to learn. I need to keep working on my openness to messiness, but I also want to become more and more attuned to beauty, joy, and God’s presence in the everyday. We still have over eight more months, but seriously, I don’t think this effort is going to end with 2014.
This post is part of a monthly One Word 365 linkup at The Messy Middle.
About Brenda W.
Christian. Memphian. Reader. Writer. True blue Tiger fan. Lover of shoes, the ocean, adventure, and McAlister’s iced tea.View all posts by Brenda W. →
Posted in linkup, one word: alive, spring