Devote: January's reflections on my #oneword365


There are times where words come easily. They flow from my hand to my pen to my paper fluidly and without ceasing. They are beautiful and meaningful. When I read them back to myself, I am often surprised at how they sound and what they say, having been so engrossed in just getting them on paper that I didn't even fully know what was being written. There are other times where bits of words swirl around in my head, and nothing coherent comes from them. I start writing, and stop just as quickly. The thoughts don't make sense, the flow isn't there, the unity and purpose is murky and messy and meaningless.

There are times when I start to write, and realize all that I'm saying is an echo of someone else's words. My sentences are new, my ideas aren't unique, and I'm just spitting out things I've consumed from other places.

Lately, my head has been a jumbled up mess. It hasn't been pretty; it hasn't been fun. I've felt lost in my own thoughts, racing through tangled webs and mazes of too many concepts and not enough cohesion and clarity. My life is busy, yes, and the tasks on my to-do list seem endless, but isn't that true of us all, all the time? That can't be an excuse.

I'm someone who writes constantly, a pen always in my hand, a Moleskine always an arm's length away, ready to be filled with any rambling thought or flowery doodle. And yet lately, I've pushed them away. The date of my last journal entry is days and days past, nothing new filling those grid paper pages I usually love to cover with ink.

How do I get out of that maze of messy thoughts and madness? How do I compartmentalize the many roles I play, so I can be fully present for each? How do I truly devote to each task before me, each relationship, each job, each passion? How do I devote my time to where the Spirit is leading me and not neglect duties and responsibilities and rest and my sanity?

Devote. A word I chose to focus on this year because I knew it would be hard. A word I know requires attention and dedication and intentionality. A word I'm struggling with. January isn't over yet. The month isn't lost. I want to be better at devotion, I want this year to start strong to set the tone for the months ahead. Devote. Oh, I want to do this better.

Lord, show me what devotion looks like. Open my eyes and my heart and my life to ways to devote all that I am and have to the things you've set before me. I want my life to be characterized by wholehearted devotion in 2014. Show me how.