Growth. Isn’t that a good word to focus upon for a brand new year?
Growth involves change. Growth generates transformation. And with a pristine new year lying ahead of us, maybe it’s time to embrace some growth and step outside that limiting box of life that has become your comfort zone.
“It’s only after you’ve stepped outside your comfort zone that you begin to change, grow, and transform.” ― Roy T. Bennett
I’ve been contemplating direction for this blog since January 1 rolled around. Do I want to change it? Do I want to grow my readership? And must I head down a different path to do so?
Should I embrace that word growth?
For over a decade I worked for a Christian non-profit organization. At each year’s end, we gathered together – staff and volunteers – for a lovely Christmas luncheon.
Great food and even better fellowship were just a couple of aspects we looked forward to, but one activity we participated in at the party caused our hearts to soar.
Prior to the gathering, our executive director would spend much time in prayer asking God to give her ‘words’ for us for the upcoming new year. Words that would become our focus for the new year to come.
Sometimes the words were contemplative, sometimes the words seemed odd. Every staff member and volunteer in attendance would pluck a folded up small piece of paper from a basket we passed around the room. Written on those notes were the words.
But before we chose the new ones, we shared aloud what our past year’s word had been and how we saw it manifest in our lives. Sometimes there were tears as we shared, sometimes laughter, often wonderment.
One year, I distinctly remember receiving the word growth, but I honestly cannot recall if that word displayed any special meaning to me that year. Had I embraced the word? I guess not.
I must have grown in some fashion that year because I believe we continue to grow in certain aspects of our lives just as surely as we age one year after another. I must have faced challenges to bring about growth, but whatever they were, they’ve faded away into the inconsequential file.
I do recall other words that I received over the years when I was a part of that ministry because they were particularly meaningful to me, but some I don’t remember at all.
Choosing a new word to focus life upon for the new year has become a ‘thing’ in certain circles, but I no longer participate in that endeavor. For me, it’s kind of gone the way of making resolutions, a practice I abandoned many years ago.
I don’t or won’t keep those pledges anyway, so why bother? It’s the same with choosing a focus word. Nine times out of 10, I’ll forget about my focus word or just won’t incorporate it into my daily life.
All of this comes to mind today because of a weekly photo challenge theme – growth.
Maybe I’m just more of a go with the flow kind of person than I ever thought. Or maybe I’m just not disciplined enough. Possibly I’m just a tad rebellious and the thought of sticking to one word for the year makes me want to just say no.
Perhaps that’s really growth. Realizing who you are and accepting it. Going your own way instead of following the crowd.
And for now, that’s what I intend to do with Mama’s Empty Nest. Go my own way. Grow in my writing and not worry about growing my followers list. Keep doing what I’ve been doing because it works for me and it seems to encourage my readers.
That’s why I write. To be an encourager. To share what works for me and hope it helps someone else. To make connections with those who read my blog. To write what inspiration God places on my heart.
And in the meantime, I’m betting I will experience growth.
“Don’t go through life, grow through life.” ~ Eric Butterworth