Monday, January 2, 2017

Full Circle

It's been waiting for me in my bathroom drawer for weeks now--the necklace that represents my goal for 2017.
While I've set one-word goals for quite a few years, this is the fifth year I've worn a necklace to symbolize that goal.

Can you see act and refine in this little box?
Last night I removed 2016's remember (and 2015's small heart that I couldn't seem to take off last January) and placed it in the small blue box with its predecessors. I've known for over a month what my goal would be for 2017, but I struggled to come up with a word to articulate my plan of action.

Pieces of me slowly eroded over the last few months. Pieces of my spirit and pieces of my health wore away bit by bit as I immersed myself in other pastimes. When I began really noticing their absence was after our trip to Pakistan. I felt . . . separated from my soul somehow. It's hard to explain, but the integral pieces of my mind, body, and spirit no longer connected to each other.

I longed to be . . .

. . . the best word I can find to describe my feelings is


All the pieces inside me hooked together with purpose. Not perfect by any means, but all working together, not vying against each other for attention. Life has been so out of balance the last few months. I knew I needed a goal that encompasses purpose and connectedness focus and . . .

While complete or whole or thorough or finished begin to explain my focus, no word exactly fits the bill. I looked in Sanskrit, even, to see if there was a yogic word or philosophy that can explain what is in my heart. I never could find a satisfactory answer. This year, I chose a symbol instead.
The circle.

I want to feel all of me working together again. I need to make time for exercise, healthy eating, family activities, scripture study, prayer, pondering, writing, and yoga.

Time is even more valuable to me now, especially finding precious thinking time--which I've discovered is necessary for my writing, teaching, mothering, and overall mental wellbeing. While the thinking moments have been rare these last few weeks, the moments I've carved out have been productive. My soul screamed, "Haven't you missed this? How have you neglected this part of you for so long? See how much you need us, too?"

I know this won't be easy. I've come a long way from where I want to be (and from where I've been before). But I'm working out some baby steps to get me there, including a daily writing journal to record my thoughts and my progress both forward and back.

The best part of this circle is the hole in the middle. Like Brad says, I'm an accomplisher. I have been all my life. I can work circles around everyone else--put in more time and lose more sleep and add more things to my list every day, but that won't solve the underlying issue this time. Christ is the One who fills up the middle. He's the One who makes the circle complete. Without reliance on Him, I won't get where I want to be.

2017 is starting out great. The lessons learned from 2016 will help (especially the final lesson I learned from it: the perfect execution of the goal matters less to me than ever before in my life. And that is the greatest lesson I will take from this year--it was enough.). I look forward to reacquainting myself with some of my favorite parts of me that I've neglected lately. 

Baby steps. Pieces of my puzzle. Centered on Jesus Christ. 


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