This is my seventh year choosing a word. My eighth year blogging. My half way through seminary mark. The year I start filling out ordination paperwork and dreaming of what is to come. This little practice of a guiding word has proved powerful in my life, and starting in December my sisters and I started texting each other about what our 2018 word might be.
Mine popped into my head extremely quickly, PERSIST.
Can I tell you this didn’t make a huge amount of sense to me, so I put it away and finished my finals and baked my cookies and had Christmas. And there it was, waiting for me persist. My word for 2018 is for sure persist.
I am not the kind of person who needs the word persist. Just this weekend I was in the urgent care for 8 hours because I was persisting through an ear ache and a it hurts to breathe and it turns out I should not have done that. I have pneumonia.
No, I am not the kind of person who needs to be told to persist, but I am the kind of person who needs to choose more carefully in her persisting. I have the tendency to throw all my energy at all the things instead of prioritizing anything. I have the tendency to over commit then run myself ragged and neglect my family a little while I deliver.
Lately, I feel like I have spread myself so thin that the things I want to persist in are not seeing enough attention. Instead of going full steam ahead this January, I did a thing I do not usually do. I did not full speed ahead, I reflected and thought about what I want to persist on. Here is the truth I have discovered: I have all the things I need to do what I feel called to do, I need to get on with it.
My best podcast guest is hands down my husband and I love doing the show with him so I need to scale back my ideas and just talk to him once a week, on purpose, while you are listening. My blog is always open and I need to write in it. My scarcity hunter email list is right there and available and I even have a class where the professor asked me to pick my own writing project. I have the tools, I have what I need, I need to stop wishing more people would notice and simply keep on keeping on.
At every turn of my creative life I decide I cannot possibly do the thing because I do not have what I need, and at every single turn I have exactly what I need to do what God is calling me to do. I might not have everything I WANT (where the heck is my personal writing cabin and my babysitter on retainer?) but I do have everything I need. When I think about what the year of persisting might mean for me, the Holy Spirit gently reminds me to get on with it already. I don’t need an audience, or a cookie, or anything else I might arbitrarily decide I absolutely have to have. I need to persist.