I’m grappling with what it means to live fully.
How to ‘take hold of the life that is truly life’, as my bible verse for this year says.
Actually, that isn’t the bit I’m grappling with. I know what it means.
I could talk you through my life, the things I do, the things I think about, the ways that I spend my time and money and energy, the people I spend time with. I could tell you what is life giving and what is life sucking. I could categorise them into healthy growth areas and things that diminish me. You get the idea. I don’t need someone to point out to me where I’m going wrong.
The part that is difficult is to let go of the life-draining things, that I’ve been holding on to with such a firm grip for so long that they have become part of my everyday.
The part I’m not doing is choosing freedom.
I’m not throwing off the things that hinder me. The things that reduce my energy and shake my confidence.
So the question I need to answer for myself, in order to move forward, is why not?
What is it that makes them so difficult to let go of?
Why does my rational brain not overrule my purely conditioned and habitual instincts?
Why do I not choose to fill my life with all the good things freely available to me?
When put like that it makes me feel like a bit of a chump.
I think it’s for a few reasons.
- FOMO – fear of missing out. What if ….. by coming off social media I don’t know what all my friends are doing all the time and I somehow miss being part of something important for someone.
- Will people think badly of me if I become more intentional in the way I use my time?
- Habitual behaviours are really hard to break.
- Maybe I still have some kind of issue in thinking that ‘good’ as in whole, and life giving and integrated, will be less exciting ?
- I am resisting full healing from the past. Perhaps because I still mistakenly believe that there needs to be more to it – I need punishment or revenge or something else.
So what do I need to remember? How should I respond to each of those thoughts when they come?
- If I am living in a way that makes me whole then I am not missing out. If you are whole, there is nothing missing.
- Intentionality is a good characteristic. Treat people like they matter. Be fully present. Don’t promise things you can’t deliver. These are all good things and you won’t be letting anyone down.
- Yes, habits are difficult to break, but they can be broken. So name them, list them, work at them. Wholeness doesn’t come easily or automatically but it will come. Tell your sisters who stand by you. Pray. Ask for help. Believe that nothing is impossible for God, and every chain is breakable (Rend Collective thank you)
- Good and whole will be mind blowing. Think of all the people you know who you admire. They are people who are living wholehearted, integrated, God-honouring, Kingdom building lives. Go. Be like them.
- The Cross. Nothing else to say on this one. Live like you believe.
So in practical terms, now that I have the reasoning in place, what is this life going to look like? The life where I take hold of the life that is truly life?
I wrote a list of what would be in this life, but it was to much of a ‘to do’ list and I don’t want it to be like that. It’s not about restrictions and shoulds – it is about freedom and expression and creativity and love.
So how about this instead?
I will choose to turn towards light every time I can make a choice.
I will choose goodness.
I will choose celebration.
I will choose gratitude.
I will be open to the universe.
I will stretch out and use every bit of potential that is stored up inside me.
I will let the Father of all love me like crazy.
I will spin and dance and lie down on the ground giddy with happiness, and I will look at the sky and feel the grass and be filled up with wonder.
And all the people said ‘Amen’
(postscript: If only it were as easy to live as it is to write. Since writing I’ve had the lousiest 4 hours. It’s a battle. I will keep fighting, but I thought it important to make sure that you know this is not trite nor easy. It IS what I want though, so I will keep pushing through.)