Thursday, January 02, 2014

One Word 365: Share

Katherine Willis Pershey did an intriguing thing in 2013: rather than make a series of resolutions, she picked a word that would sum up what she'd strive to do and be through the year. Her word was "advocate," which led to her taking an active stance regarding gun reforms.

Her word for this year is "gentle:"
I want to be gentle with myself. I want to be gentle with others. I'm probably not - okay, definitely not - going to stop being idealistic or perfectionistic, but I can at least practice some gentleness in the midst of all that endless striving.  
One of the reasons this word calls to me is because gentleness - along with love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control - is one of the fruits of the Spirit, and it means a great deal to me to hew close to the Spirit when setting this intention for the year.
I find this concept simultaneously inspiring and terrifying. I wrote the other day about some of the things I want to strive to do this next year, and in some ways I think it can be summed up thus:


I was very drawn into myself in 2013. I could really trace it further back than that, but due to all the transition, some strong natural tendencies, and some stuff I was processing related to some ministry experiences at my previous stop, I was very much in a spiritual cocoon for much of the year. The positive moments came when I picked up the phone and reached out to people, whether to talk over some of the stuff I needed to get through my system, to catch up, or just to get out for a night.

On top of that, it took me needing to tell people I needed to talk; they weren't going to read my mind. Being able to share a Five Iron Frenzy concert with an old friend was good for my soul. Even sharing books off of my bookshelf with people whom I thought would enjoy them was important for me to do.

So, the seeds are planted. Now for this year, I plan to nurture it further, to share myself more with others in a way that I really haven't for a long time.

So this is my word for 2014: share. To share more of who I am, what I need, and what I have.

May it be so.