Sunday, January 07, 2007

Focusing my thoughts-

I have not gone into a long list of resolutions for the year for a good reason. I don't make resolutions, nor stick to them. I have been like this almost my whole life; 'bucking the system'; trying to NOT fit in or go along with the crowd; doing my own thing.
Just ask Chip about me in highschool (even though he didn't know me then, he can tell you what I was like!)...I just have this thing about 'popular culture or going with the trends. I guess it's a part of my DNA more then anything. Remember that I'm a middle child too...so my 'environment' has shaped me in many ways. This is no different.
The past couple of years as I have moved away from the deep sorrow and sadness and valley of grief in life, I have used the New Year to focus on a certain characteristic in my life that I would like to grow and/or strengthen. I have used the Bible as a key tool in developing these traits.
As 2007 approached, I spent time in prayer and study asking God to direct me as to what He would have me learn and I have finally focused my thoughts and ideas into something I felt would make some sense here on my blog.
So, once again, this is for me. My own Nitty.Gritty. take on New Year's resolutions. I am seeking daily to grow spiritually, as I feel that it is THE most important thing I can do in life. I try to weed out the things that 'take away' from my goal- which is to grow and become more and more like Christ, and one day spend all eternity in Heaven with Him. I am thankful for the New Year and the idea of a fresh start; a new beginning or a clean slate. Instead of creating a long list of things I want to change for this year, I am focusing on an idea. It's about personal enrichment really. I believe that growing spiritually will ultimately affect my mind and body too. I think they all tie into one another more than the general population realizes they do...and for me, the most importnant thing, as I already said, is my spiritual growth.
My thoughts and prayers and heart have directed me to a sort of challenging topic the last few weeks. It has to do with living life as a daily sacrifice. For me, it means sacrifice first to God, then family, then to others and finally to myself. See? I told you it's kind of a heavy topic. I'm not even sure I know what I am getting myself into, but I have been affirmed in seeking this in my life already. I have had daily readings and verses give me insights already.
Last evening after the kids had gone to bed, I went into my scrap room and started to make an album (8x8 for those of you who scrap) to hold some of my thoughts and to give me a tangible starting point and place to record my growth through this coming year...and probably beyond, as I believe this topic is one that will hopefully last my whole lifetime and become a part of who I am.
Anyway, as I started working on the first page, in the background the radio was playing and a song came on with lyrics about the Lamb of God and how He was the sacrifice for us. Then a few songs later came a worship tune about bringing the 'sacrifice of praise' to God. It was as if the playlist had been picked just for my time alone with my thoughts, my creativity and my heart to be blessed. It was beautiful. I went to bed with the start of an album that I'm not sure I even know what it will fill up with in the end, but my heart was full and my intents and goals seemed so clear. Lofty. {Me? Living a DAILY life of sacrifice...} I know I have been blessed many times over in my lifetime. I am embracing the idea of living and giving of myself whenever I can, in whatever way suits the person, place or situation best.
I'd love for any of you that come across books, songs, quotes, stories, whatever it may be, that in some way embody the idea of sacrificial living, to email me (nitty.grittyjody@yahoo.com ) or leave me a comment here. That's one of the reasons I'm sharing my thoughts today- so that I can be encouraged or challenged by others. I am not a saint. I've said that before. =) I just know that there is a big gap between who I am, and who I was meant to be. I believe that focusing and making a meaningful attempt at spiritual growth can only bring me one step closer to being who I was designed to be. You can join me in this journey if you wish. I think there is something for all of us to learn. Today. Tomorrow and all through the year.

4 comments:

Disney Scrapper said...

Jody you must read Melody Ross entry for today. I love reading her thoughts and ideas and truly enjoyed reading yours. If you don't have her link just go to my blog, I posted about her today and about my own spiritual journey. I love spending time alone with the Lord and just meditating in my music. Look forward to reading more of your daily discovery.

kimB said...

This is awesome, Jody -- your scrapbook and your openness about living a daily sacrifice...

As Disney Scrapper said in the post before mine - you and Melody Ross are on the same wavelength -- putting the Lord first, living the life He's called you to, going deeper in your relationship with Him.

I am seeing this in a lot of the scrapbooker blogs I've been reading lately. What is even more amazing, is that I am on the same plane as you, Melody and the others.

The Lord has told me that 2007 is to be "a year of PURPOSE" in other words, I am to stop letting life happen *to* me and start living it with purpose. I am to create the life I want to live.

And I can only do that through the power of the Holy Spirit.

I am eager to see where the Lord will take us, Jody - individually and corporately.

Blessings and Hugs from Alaska - kimB

Maija said...

Funny! I actually came to your blog to share an article I read this morning that made me think of you. The article is about finding joy. The part I particularly like is about noting your blessings and the role you played in that. I am personally focused, like kimb, on living my life with more purpose and actively seeking change, rather than complaining if something isn't right.

http://www.deliciouslivingmag.com/magazine/index.cfm?fuseaction=article&issueID=93&articleID=2141

teresa may said...

what a great idea to make a "creative/pretty journal". i love it!