Shine. That’s the word of the year. I always doubt when God presents the word or phrase of the year, especially since I haven’t felt much like shining. I’ve felt rather dull, actually. Could be the weather, or just the lack of fire in my soul right now, but I don’t feel very shiny.
2019 was supposed to be bold and unapologetic (you can read about it HERE). Boy, did God and I have different ideas of what that would like like. I thought I would set the world on fire with my writing, photography, wild rags. Instead, for a lack of better words, the world kicked my ass. Every time I turned around, the enemy was attacking me or my loved ones.
I looked up the definitions of both words and this is what I found:
- (of a person, action, or idea) showing an ability to take risks; confident and courageous.
- having a strong or vivid appearance.
- not acknowledging or expressing regret.
I definitely did not feel bold in 2019. I felt defeated. Tired. At a loss. I felt like I was scrambling most of the time – the whole, ‘fake it until you make it’ summed up my year. However, God showed me a few things and in retrospect:
- I was bold. Bold in believing that no matter what, He would take care of me (no weapon formed against me).
- I was unapologetic in taking time for myself. If you know me, you know how epic this is.
- I was bold in letting go of who I thought everyone needed me to be.
- I was unapologetic in not only letting people help me, but asking for help. I have spent my whole life taking care of others, giving them what they need, that when I needed help, and felt at the end of my rope, letting go of pride and letting people do for me was the most humbling experience.
- I was bold (scared and saddened) to let go of the one person (other than my daughter) who holds the biggest piece of real estate in my heart. However, I stand unapologetic in the love and admiration I have for that person.
- I was unapologetic in seeking out second and third opinions. Tenacity is definitely a trait you need when your health is in question.
- I was bold in finally standing up for myself in ways that 25 years ago, I never would have thought of doing.
So, when the term “shine” kept crossing my path for 2020, I really had stop and reflect. I don’t want to shine. Heck, some days, I don’t even want to interact with other humans. And I thought, what does that really mean? Yep, you guessed it. According to the dictionary, shine means:
- be very talented or perform very well.
- a quality of brightness, especially from reflected light.
- (of the sun or another source of light) give out a bright light.
And I was reminded (thank you God) that shining has nothing to do with me. It has to do with using AND sharing the talents, skills, and passions he has anointed me with; it has do with sharing what he has done in my life with others, without fear; and more importantly, letting his love radiate from my heart, soul, and mouth like a west Texas sunrise.
So this year, I am letting go of all expectations. False hopes. Broken pieces. Unattainable standards. I am going to let my gifts shine and quit worrying so much when I’m stuck “in the dark.” This year is definitely going to be an interesting one.
This little light of mine…I’m gonna let it shine…