Some people assign one word to their year, like it’s easily containable. I thought about doing that in January, thought about affixing the latest Christian buzzword to my twenty-third year and breathing a sigh of relief that now I didn’t have to worry about making my year count – the word did it for me.
And while you may have guessed, since it’s September and I’ve only just mentioned it, I did not end up doing it. Partly because I’m not very good at planning ahead. Partly because I’m bad at judging the passing of time, and in March it still felt like January, and I still had time to choose.
But the crux of it is this: there are too many good things in life to pick just one.
My friends have done this: “This is the year of yes,” “This is the year of trust,” and it’s benefited them greatly. I don’t want to say meditating on one thought or one ambiguous philosophy for one year is a bad thing.
I read Ann Voskamp’s One Thousand Gifts. I know what it looks like to have your life transformed by the power of one word. Her experience of gratitude was encouraging, and it opened me up to the possibility of a grateful life, maybe even a grateful life before a penitent one. My journal now has lists of the blessings God has given me.
But I couldn’t stick to it. I tried to count up and up and list a thousand blessings, but I couldn’t do it. Not because God hasn’t seen fit to give me a thousand gifts, but because, I think, it takes more than gratitude to have a full life.
I couldn’t stick to just one fruit of the spirit, just one beautiful thought to meditate on for 365 days.
Gratitude is a huge part of the Christian life. But so is honesty. So is joy. So is hope.
Over the next few weeks, I hope to explore these things. The beautiful things that make life a glimpse of what is to come.
I join the ranks of many good thinkers and observers and writers. I’d love to hear your thoughts on beauty, joy, honesty, gratitude, all the beautiful.