Word of the Year

There appears to be a trend for people to choose a word of the year. A personal word that has meaning for themselves. This idea intrigued me.

As I mentioned in my disappearing post [another story for another day] I am anticipating a great adventure in the near future. Whether that comes to pass or not I am in the mood to reduce. With that on my brain, I thought maybe my word of the year could be “reduce”. In talking about this with my very smart sister (well, one of them), she suggested another word; a word that has more than one meaning. My intention to reduce (clutter, weight, stress, etc.) is definitely a positive thing, however the word itself carries a negative connotation~especially in our consumer driven, materialistic world.

I want to carry into this year a word that will not be burdensome, but that will give inspiration; not just to me, but to those around me.

photo credit Zhenya S

photo credit Zhenya S

What is that word?


A few of the definitions of lighten are:

to relieve of a burden in whole or in part  
to reduce in weight or quantity  
to make less wearisome
to become less burdensome
to become more cheerful
to shine brightly
These are the characteristics I wish to portray in 2014

A Prayer of Thanksgiving

Thank you, Abba

for making me your daughter,

A Princess.

Thank you for making me in your image,

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Life Coaching

If you try finding the definition for Life Coaching you’ll probably be overwhelmed with the number of responses. There are about as many definitions as there are life coaches. In the most basic sense coaching is helping someone go from good to excellent.

If we’re talking about a sports coach they take an individual or team; motivate, guide, hold accountable, and inspire them to move from being good to excellent. The same is true of a life coach.

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Life, Death, and Beauty

Earlier today I was planning to write about beauty.

I found a video clip that explains why stress affects our skin and I had some thoughts about that and how the products of Sarah-Noelle could help both with stress and skin care.

Part of Sarah-Noelle’s mission statement is, “While perfect skin and physical beauty are not ultimate goals, there is a sense of contentment in knowing you look your best—especially when you understand that your external appearance is merely a prelude to the authentic, spiritual artistry that is within you.”

The news I received this afternoon about a friend (and former roommate) taking her own life on Thursday has changed my frame of mind today.

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If I were to list the top things that Satan uses to try to get to me it would look something like this:

1. Money/Car (usually related, but not always)
2. Depression
3. Addiction

Surrounding my recent sobriety birthday he has been pretty busy in my life trying to get me off track.

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I Do It Myself!!!

“I do it myself!”

When you hear it from a two year old you are either quietly amused or extremely frustrated–possibly both.

When you hear it from an adult who needs help you may feel frustrated, sad, or disappointed.

When you hear it from a young adult who is stepping out on their own you may be sad or ecstatic, or once again . . . both.

There are times in our lives that “doing it ourselves” is a very dangerous proposition.

There are other times when it’s a growth experience.

This past week I’ve been feeling isolated and lonely. On at least one occasion I’ve reached out to connect with someone healthy and safe. That was good for the time we were together, however when I left I went back to the state of loneliness.

In the past I would have reached out to literally anyone who would give me attention. Trading anything–including my soul–for that moment of connectedness.

The truth is I have dozens of friends that I could call on at any hour. And I have no doubt that they would be there for me. But something kept me from calling them–a knowledge that they didn’t have what I needed.

During this time I’ve also been dealing with some frustration with a lack of productivity and a search for someone to hold me accountable. I’ve been lacking the motivation to do things that have to be done–walking, working out, taking care of my home, etc. So, if I can find someone to hold me accountable then maybe I’ll do these things.

I woke up yesterday with the realization that it’s time for me to “do it myself”. Not doing it alone. I’ve proven over and over again in my life that I can’t do anything without Christ. Okay, I can make a really big mess, but to clean it up I need God.

What I can’t do is live my life for any other person . . . or their approval. If my house is going to get clean and stay that way . . . I do it myself. If I’m going to eat healthy . . . I do it myself. If I’m going to work out and lose weight . . . I do it myself. Again, I can not accomplish any of that without God’s help and guidance. But neither can I do it for the sake of someone else.

The loneliness and isolation? That was God pursuing me. Oh, I’d been talking to him. Asking him to bring someone into my life to hold me accountable–and I do need that. However, I have to find my own motivation.

It’s a pretty awesome realization that God is pursuing me. I mean, God is pursing me. He’s pursuing me . . . he wants to spend time with me . . . he wants me to turn to him–for everything.

I have found much contentment in being single over the last several years. However, that doesn’t negate the need to be wanted and loved. Intellectually I’ve known that God is my lover, my husband, my companion . . . and that’s good to know. Today I know that he’s all of that and much much more. I know it in my heart.

So as I was cleaning and cooking yesterday I was also talking to God. His answer came in the form of a song. “Psalm 62” by Shane and Shane. It’s been in my iTunes for more than a year–this is the first time I’ve heard it.

He’s the only one
strong enough to lean
my heaviness against
the weight of all my sin
falling on a rock
leaning on a fortress
Oh the wall of God
Jesus, he won’t move

On God I rest
my salvation
my fortress shall not be shaken
My mighty rock and my glorious
I lay my head upon his chest

On God I rest . . .

So . . . “my soul rests, on God alone” . . .

and with God’s help alone “I do it myself!”

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What is Real?

That’s the question asked by the Velveteen Rabbit and answered by the Skin Horse in the following excerpt:

“What is Real?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”

“Real isn’t how your are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves, then you become Real.”

“Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit

“Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”

“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”

“It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t often happen to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”

So . . . who am I . . . Really?

I’m a ragamuffin, an addict, a sinner, and a wretch

who is loved by God and redeemed by the blood of Christ on the cross

an heir to the throne, a daughter of the King of kings

A Princess

who loves the color pink and refuses to ‘grow up’

I am Me!

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