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Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Simply Said

Nothing is simpler or more potentially powerful than one well chosen word.  


Apparently there is an idea circling the blogoshpere of using one word to inspire one's year in terms of improvement (I hesitate to use the "R" word).  I've now seen it a few times, some posts serious and some in jest, but I got this idea initially from Octamom.  While I'm rarely known for my brevity, the idea of a single word directing my progress appeals to me.  It seems more achievable than a laundry list of all of the areas in my life which I feel are lacking.  Finding that word, the one word that will make a bigger difference than any other, that is another story.

I think that people are drawn to different words the way they are drawn to colors or symbols.  Words are in fact symbols, often, of deeper meanings.  Many of the words that seemingly appeal to the masses have little pull on me.  They seem broad in meaning, trite, pedestrian.  Words inspiring change and improvement often fall into this category for me.

So change.  Looking for change, for improvement.  I thought about "skinny," but that sounded crass.  I've seen "simplify" and I can appreciate that, but my problem would then using that simplified time and space wisely, which does not necessarily follow.  "Blog less, Mother more" is a phrase rather than a word, and something I'm not sure I'm ready for.

This then, for me, came down to identifying my biggest challenge, or at least the most meaningful.  That is easy.  It is in my spiritual health that needs the most attention.  I attend church meetings more than regularly.  I fulfill my callings with thought and organization and care.  When the compassionate service leader calls, I am there.  I am a decent Visiting Teacher.  I hold regular Family Home Evenings, family prayer and family scripture study.  I also feed my kids breakfast and make their lunches.  But I often don't eat myself.  And I generally don't read my scriptures on my own, and my prayer habits are not regular.  

I do think a lot about my relationship with God, and my inadequacies there.  Because I like to think.  I don't need a schedule for thinking.  So if some of that thinking can count as having a prayerful heart, maybe I'm not quite as bad off as I think.  Taking an honest inventory, it seems I do best at personal spiritual health habits when I have made a project out of it for one reason or another.  Because I also like a project.  Or at least I am good at getting a project done.  

So my word for the year is "Discipleship."  I think discipleship is what is most important for me to develop, to focus on.  Maybe a year-long project will turn into something more permanent, some changing of the hard-wiring in my system.  I hope and suspect that other problems I see in my life will then fall into one of two categories.  They will either naturally improve as a function of trying harder to follow my Savior or they will not matter so much.  And I think I am at a stage in my life where I at least have the desire to let go of the things that matter less.

Now, first thing's first.  I need to find a super-cool quote for my blog and contact my local vinyl lettering sales woman.  Well, maybe not.  But I do need to go have a morning prayer.

19 fishy comments:

Erin said...

Discipleship. What a nice word. Keep us updated on your progress. It will help motivate me too.

2busy said...

Prayer: Ask and ye shall receive...

Lara said...

I think this is a perfect word. Love it. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

So said...

I like this word. I'm in a similar situation as you when it comes to prayers and my relationship to God. It's something I'm working on this year as well, in my quest for my word...Happiness.

Kristina P. said...

Great word! I haven't seen the same word twice.

clan of the cave hair said...

excellent word. I totally get what you're saying here. And I love that you're putting it out there because I think there are alot of people on the fence in the church who *think* (however wrongly) that everybody who attends regularly and fulfills their callings has some super awesome unattainable relationship with God. I know for a fact that some decide they don't measure up, and then give up. I hope that as a result of your honesty, you'll experience at least one true moment of discipleship when somebody who's on the fence realizes that what's going on on the outside rarely has little do with what's on the inside and they know they too can step it up and do what it takes to draw nearer.

Jillene said...

I am in the same boat as you. I need to REALLY work on my personal prayers and scripture study this year. I have been SO bad lately and I need to get back on track. I love the word--it's perfect!!

Diane said...

I have many of the same feelings too, I love your word decipleship and what that means.

CaJoh said...

Good for you to find one word to sum up your goals. The word you chose is very inspiring to us all.

Thank you,

Sher said...

I love this post!! Thank you!
I needed to hear this today, to remind me where my priorities should be!

Heatherlyn Colt said...

That's a great word, maybe even for life. My hubby and I have been reading in the "Church History Fullness of Times" manual and loving it. One thing that has caught my attention so far (we are at the beginning) is how all those years before Joseph got the plates he was learning how to keep his "eye single to the glory of God". It's really inspiring to learn from his experience about how to do that. I'm sure that you will have a very positive year.

Melanie J said...

I think this is a fantastic goal. I think it's a really wise word choice. Thanks for making me think today.

Kim said...

I'm with you on tossing out the long list of self-improvements we often make in January and switching to one very specific, hopefully attainable goal--even better to come up with a single word. Last year was the first year that I stopped typing up my many New Year's resolutions. I decided that I simply wanted to draw nearer to our Savior. I certainly didn't master that one, but progress was definitely made through some sweet experiences. It was easier for me to have one overall goal to focus on during the year. This year, for me, it's scripture study--personal and family. One thing that's really been helping (and this is only about 4 months late) is that we're finally using that book we bought at "Time Out for Women & Girls". I am loving that and wish that I had started using it sooner.

mormonmommyblogs said...

Your blog made the voting list for the MMB January spotlight. Be sure to tell your readers to go vote for you!

rachel said...

Beautiful thoughts Mina! I love, love, love Neal Maxwell and every time I hear that word I think of him.
Brilliant choice.

Octamom said...

Beautiful! Can't wait to see where this word takes you!

Blessings!

mallory at greencafe. said...

Ah, here you hit the challenge of motherhood AND spirituality on the head. Prayer does not happen when you are taking care of others. That is service and we all work hard. No, you need to take time to focus within yourself, oneself, be by ourself (even in a crowd, but not caring for the crowd in action). This is my challege as well, and I only really find that time on Sunday, to ignore the physical needs of others and focus on inner peace. Then the actions with others are on a higher plane.

Rhonda said...

ahhh, I like that! Came by way of the Mormonmommies...

Have a great day.

#1 said...

love your blog