Any eloquence for my one word of this year, has vanished. Part of that has everything to do with how, since 2012, each one word has inflicted me with an awe-inspiring and frightfully prophetic nature.
Last year’s “invite”, opened doors of certain invitation I was not prepared for. And when they opened, I, from pure habit, shut them with a “no”. In fact, I slammed them rather rudely, the door jams rattling from force. A time or two, I even laughed at the folly that the knobs had turned in the first place.
Mistakes, they were. Must’ve been.
Anticipation is Not a Heinz 57 Commercial
I’ve naively anticipated each year with marvel and wonder. But by the end of it, I’ve marveled and wondered how I survived the necessary stretching I endured from it.
Last year when I introduced “invite,” I qualified it on Facebook and wrote:
“Don’t let INVITE fool you. There is more to the story of how it will wreck us, if we let it. It is not your ordinary, simple One Word. Of course not. No One Word ever is. When a sole word involves your posture for the year to come, there are soul-splitting cogitations attached behind every tittle and dotted ‘i’. And even if we try not to, God is there bringing His bigness into our smallness, stretching, pulling, enlarging, expanding His territory within, INVITE-ing the fullness of who are meant to be for Him.”
See. See how much better that was? I can assure you, no such prose addled my brain today.
Propeling in Courage, Ready or Not
My word is: P R O P E L.
I typed that and had to pause. I had to breathe in deep, not sure how to proceed. I assume propel will ruin me in the best and worst of ways. I can not imagine how it will happen. I try to imagine. But I can’t. In fact, I won’t imagine it. I don’t advocate ignorance, however, I recgonize there are advantages of it.
Toward the end of 2015, I was convicted, and rightly so, of my door-slamming, invitation-squashing, “no”s. I then told God, quite sure of myself and of His position on the matter, that if He opened another door (and I had very specific, reluctant doors in mind), then yes, my answer would be “yes.”
Last year, God had plopped funny ideas in my head. I, on the other hand, had thought Him a comedian. But just to make sure, I also had told Him if an opportunity landed squarely in my lap and knocked me upside the head in the process, I’d know He wasn’t laughing. At least, not in an April’s Fool kindof way.
And of course 2015 went the way of most Bible stories, ending with my lap handed to me. From mid 2015 ’til now, I have said yes. I didn’t go looking for them. God and I can attest to that.
Knowing the Right No’s & the Best Yes’
In this brand, spanking new year, I’ve continued to say yes, my yes-er all practiced up for 2016. But that also means saying a different kind of “no.” These kind of no’s, in of them self, become their own taskmaster.
Saying no to things I feel ill-qualified, and even more ill-fitted to do–easy. Done. No way, no how. Nope, nada. Super-duper, stick-a-fork-in-me, not gonna.
Yet saying no to things I’m gifted for, or things I coulda, shoulda, and woulda? Or saying yes to things that are good and better, but not best for me and my family? Much, much harder.
But this is a year of propel-ing, right?
A Gut Check
I’m not here predicting any grand finales for 2016. For Pete’s sake, it’s still too shiny and new.
But I do have wild ideas. I blame God for those.
It’s a year not only of walking through doors, but moving past them. Actually, I’m not sure I’ll walk through them as much as I’ll get propeled through them, like a stray cat getting thrown off the porch, legs and claws scratching at the wind.
However, one foot in front of the other, I plan to move onward, forward-like, following God into areas I’d only go because He took me there. He may have to carry me from a dead faint, but nowhere did Webster’s dictionary mention being conscious in order to propel.
I’m tempted to put my fingers in my ears and “fall-la-la-la” the year away. But I can’t do that. None of us can, or in the least, none of us should.
Regardless of what your year brings, truth be told, we’re all propeling to what God’s called us. Not a one of us is propelled without a bit of trepidation. Excitement may have been our first expression of it, a giddy daydream of sorts. But eventually we wised up to what we were getting ourselves into, with God of course, and woke up in a cold sweat.
I say this, not to scare the bejeebers out of us. Rather, I mention it in hopes that we aspire to courageous lives. To not let our own fears rob us, but to propel ourselves into the very goodness of God. Besides, we knew in our gut we were meant to be doing this all along.