Final Thoughts on My One Word for 2014: Listen

My One Word for 2013 was empower.

I am still learning how to empower and to empower others. It is an ongoing practice and necessarily so.

My One Word for 2014 is/was listen.

As with my 2013 word, I am still learning how to listen. It too, is an ongoing and necessary practice.

But I have experienced, not just learned, but experienced a great deal by focusing on listening.

But there have been many moments, deep moments when the willingness of listening…

to my body (too much sugar, Jim; too much carb, Jim: uh Jim, you have a bad tooth (that was a recent one)

to my soul (you’re angry Jim, why?: why Jim are you so envious?; Jim you are too full of yourself, stop it!)

to people in pain – physical and otherwise

to God – “God will make a way, when there seems to be no way”

has been an experience of grace and peace

the peace, the serenity, the hope, the calm which listening has brought has been truly priceless.

In my listening I have

discovered ugly and black places in my heart and soul that the finger of God has been put on causing my ego and pride to scream out and resist until Grace comes in…

discovered the presence of God in a fresh affirming way as the song by Don Moen, God Will Make A Way has lodged in my mind as I have prayed about/for personal and family issues. He IS making a way and I am beginning to see that in some small, yet significant ways, which bring peace to me,

So I will continue to listen (and empower) because these words have been practices that I must continue to practice.

And I will also continue to listen because as I have prayed and reflected on My One Word for 2015 one has clearly been placed front and center in which the practices and of listen and empower are both a result of and embedded in this ancient spiritual practice.

I will write about this new word sometimes next month.

“So many words get lost. They leave the mouth and lose their courage, wandering aimlessly until they are swept into the gutter like dead leaves. On rainy days, you can hear their chorus rushing past: IwasabeautifulgirlPleasedon’tgoItoobelievemybodyismadeofglass-I’veneverlovedanyoneIthinkofmyselfasfunnyForgiveme…

There was a time when it wasn’t uncommon to use a piece of string to guide words that otherwise might falter on the way to their destinations…

When the world grew bigger, and there wasn’t enough string to keep the things people wanted to say from disappearing into the vastness, the telephone was invented.

Sometimes no length of string is long enough to say the thing that needs to be said. In such cases all the string can do, in whatever its form, is conduct a person’s silence.”

Nicole Strauss The History of Love

 

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4 thoughts on “Final Thoughts on My One Word for 2014: Listen”

    1. Thanks Rachel!

      And it is interesting to note that after I wrote that post my ‘listening’ ears seem to become more tuned to things I need to listen to and for!

      Have a great week!

      Jim

  1. {Edited}

    Jim,

    I too had a word for 2014 – it was joy! Such a strange word for this year. God has brought me through many trials and tribulations this season. At one point I had to “lay my Isaac on the altar” and whisper “not my will but Thine”. Then JOY appeared and “my Isaac” walked back down the mountain beside me – no longer mine but His.

    Then I had to learn how to love and accept the fact that I must decrease in someone’s heart as another increased. That was an internal struggle that I mostly kept to myself – ashamed of my pride and blackness of my selfishness. Then God took my selfish little heart and changed it and put a love in place of my self-centeredness that could only have come from Him.

    So 2014 has been a year of “joy”, unexpected, from entirely different avenues. The lesson this year has been “the joy of the Lord is my strength” and I can turn that around and say “the strength of the Lord is my joy!”. I chose “joy” each day and I know that when I do that joy spills over to others – they can accept it or not — but I chose to walk in His love, peace and joy!

    Yours Cous’,

    Sue

    1. Thanks cousin!

      I know that it has been a hard year but I heard JOY in your voice as we talked last week!
      (I also edited out your work information.)

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