My one word for 2015 is “Shine”. There is this image of sparkles, light reflecting brightly, a clean slate and all around perfection when the word “shine” crosses my path. Everything is working together and producing a goodness for others. Well, that is not me-not even close!
I am not shining and God has so much work to do on this girl to get the sparkles going!
So now that February is waning and March is hovering close by, what do I have to show for my one word? You will be surprised when I share the answer – “a lot”! I am also surprised at the sheer messiness of it all and how God is working it out for His good. All I can say is He is amazing and loves creating much out of the mistakes and rough edges of our lives.
Reality shows that when I reflect on how well I am taking care of myself you will see failure. I wrote A Closet Eater’s Diet back in January and have struggled with releasing it all to God. I let myself get sucked into the tug of war that I can do this myself when everything points to the difficulty of self-care when we do not let God take charge. In order for me to shine, I need to be physically strong to take on the future God has planned for me. He is still working on me and He will never give up and this is good.
Reality shows me my days of always being the strong one have come to a screeching halt. My outer appearance has begun to take on the inner turmoil I have experienced since January. Getting “real” has been God’s way of working on me to shed my “everything is fine” exterior. Getting “real” means I admit when I am weak, I ask for help when I need it and I share how God redeems me through it all. My writing has been a call to share the real, which I have done in An Invitation: Come As You Are…The Weekend Brew, When Life is One Big Exhale and Where God Found Me in 2005 …A Guest Post@Testimony Tuesday. It has been a stepping out of my comfort zone, a sharing of the inner turmoil that God is working for my good, and a peeling back of the strong facade that I wear as my armor everyday. It is real, messy and it is all me!
I have the sparkly “shine” necklaces that you see above but my reality does not match the beautiful, unflawed appearance of these necklaces. My reality matches the necklace below and reflects exactly where I am today and the work that God wants to continue in me.
When I found this necklace and ordered it, I knew the message was God’s way of telling me how He was going to help me “shine” this year. He promises that the broken become whole, the tarnished become shiny, and His light will always break through darkness. I am His work in progress and He has so much more to do, but through it all He teaches us, carries us and brings us through to the other side. God never gives up on us but chases us relentlessly to make us His own creation.
[Tweet “Let Jesus cradle your flaws in His Hands and love them into beautiful perfection.”]
God doesn’t ask us for perfect and shiny. We are made perfect in Him. My brokenness and flaws are cradled in the Hands of Jesus who loves them into His beautiful perfection.
Join me in my brokenness as I invite God into the middle and accept His reality as mine. Walk the path of uncertainty into His amazing light. Become real and allow God’s presence to become yours through every messy imperfection that is made new through God.
22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. Ephesians 4:22-24
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Of all the “Passage…” I’ve read, this one has touched me the most. Although I knew you struggled for a while, it seemed as if God picked you up and showed you His love overwhelmingly and you were always riding on His shoulders without a worry in the world. As you know, that has not been the case here. Am I not strong enough? Do I not pray enough? Do I not share His love enough? Do I not deserve Him for some reason? This message showed me you have your ups and downs and you’re still working hard at it…I will journey onward…
Lynne-I think we spend too much time showing the world who we think they want to see instead of who we really are. You need to know that I have many ups and downs and life is hard for all of us at times. I love that you are journeying onward. Please know I am on this journey with you and together we will push forward to all God has planned for us. Love you friend!
God is close to the brokenhearted. 🙂
Keep on shining your light, Mary.
Thank you Lux! Isn’t beautiful that God takes us anyway we show up? Praying that we all choose to show up and shine brightly for God. Have a beautiful weekend!
I think it’s easy to believe that we are shining when in reality we are more like “fools gold” and all our efforts to impress through our piety or “good works” are a false light. I also think that the evidence of God shining in us is often paradoxical–not obvious or born out of what seems to be “shiny.” Your humbleness and willingness to admit failure is a burst of God’s shining light, Mary! Your perseverance–albeit messy–is evidence of God’s shining light in you. Your humbleness to admit you need God because you are weak, is God’s light shining in and through you, my friend! I think that sometimes we can’t see how bright our light is shining except through the eyes of our friends. With you, dear Mary, we are amazed! You go, girl!
“Shine” is my word, too! How about that?! And I agree, the only way I shine is when Jesus shines through me … and He can only do that, when I run out of “me” and let Him take over. Thank you for sharing! Visiting from #RaRaLinkup
Amen! Less of me and more of Him is such a great reminder that life is how we live for Jesus and not about us at all. We are His vessel created to shine for His glory. Have a blessed weekend.
Very encouraged by your words and I love the reminder that we are made perfect through Jesus! Praise God!
I am blessed you are here Ruth! God teaches us daily and it shows up in so many ways. I love how he loves me no matter how I wake up each day and how I might show I am not perfect. Have a blessed weekend!
Oh sweet friend… you DO shine, girlie! Oh you DO! Praying for you… believing with you… standing by you! (And oh my word, that necklace!!! LOVE!)
You know your sweet encouragement is always such a joy to receive? Thank you for that gift today. Praying that we all remember we serve a mighty God in the middle of our everyday! Happy Thursday!
Thank you for reminding me to shine. Just a few years ago I did not feel worthy of God’s love. Now I know that through everything I am ready to shine His words to others.
Yes and you’re welcome! Thank you for encouraging me!
Thank you for reminding me to shine. I always thought of myself as not worthy enough of God’s love until a few years ago. Your blog reminded me that I am worthy enough to shine His word to others!
Amen Valerie! God calls us to shine and He chooses each of us for many different reasons. Blessed you stopped by today!
Hi Mary! I think you are shining way more than you know. You surely do through your honesty and dedication to making a change in your life, believe it!
Wear that jewelry with pride! Of course you won’t ever be perfect, none of us is. But we can all strive to have that light shine through our broken pots. And I relate a lot more to someone who struggles vs. someone who has it all together.
Let’s walk this year together in joy while we shine!
I love the idea of walking with you in joy while we shine. Let’s allow God to challenge us (hopefully no broken bones for me!:) as well as lead us closer to Him in all we do. Shining through all our messiness will be a beautiful thing! Happy recovery friend!
I find you very shiny, my friend :)! I absolutely love the bottom necklace. Would you mind telling me where you found it? I definitely need to order one. I’m so with you on the food issues, Mary. I feel your pain. I think shedding our “’everything is fine’ exterior” is a huge leap forward. God made us to help each other and we can only do that by reaching out. Your words and honesty are always a blessing to me.
Candace- You bless me by just being here! We share a lot of similarities and one of those is our love of God. I know if we ever got together we would have a lot to talk about. Thank you for blessing me today. 🙂
I think you shine for Him very well. 🙂
Love you Heather! Thank you for your sweet encouragement!
I love the heart behind this post Mary. So honest. And I love the bling you have to remind you of your One Word journey too. You said it best here: “God doesn’t ask us for perfect and shiny. We are made perfect in Him. My brokenness and flaws are cradled in the Hands of Jesus who loves them into His beautiful perfection.” And all God’s people said: AMEN!
I just love when you stop by, Nicki! How wonderful is that God always accepts us just they way we are? Getting real seems to be the process that God is using to work on me and how He wants me to shine this year. Have a blessed rest of the week.
Shine- I love that word! I let myself believe for a while that my word was FOCUS, but that was not God’s intention. Instead, God wants me to TRUST. Yikes! That’s much scarier than focus:) But, we can pray for each other as we learn and grow from these words. Blessings to you today!
Yes! I love the idea of praying for each other as God continues to reveal His plans for us and how our one words will manifest themselves this year.Beautiful idea! Thank you for stopping by!
You shine more than you think. The beauty is how you shine through the realness of life. Keep shining!
The beauty is how you shine through the realness of life! Amen! If I look at the literal meaning of shine, it seems that real needs to be hidden in order for me to get my shine on! However, God is teaching me otherwise. Have a blessed week!
Mary, you are beautiful! Cheering you on to let His light continue to SHINE through you! Thanks for linking up on #raralinkup today. Have a great day,
Thank you Kim! I love the community at the #RaRalinkup and the beautiful encouragement that results. Thank you for stopping by!
Hi Mary – You have shared so openly in this post. What struck me is this – We all know the sun shines. It does so effortlessly, just doing what it was created to do from the start. Your life is much the same – as you do what you have been created to do, you are shining. Right where you are. In the middle of whatever you do. Every single day. So grateful for your words which encourage us all. Blessings!
Thank you Joanne! I am in awe of how God teaches each of us and when we think nothing good is happening is exactly the time that the God reveals we are making a difference. Thank you for assuring me that in the middle of my mess, God resides and allows me to shine for Him. Blessings and hugs!
Mary, you shine brightly in my life. Your courage to write from messy and hard places gives me courage to continue to walk my own broken road. Thank you for always being there for me. Love and hugs!
Barbie- You are such a gift to me that it is easy to walk this road with you. I am blessed by your encouragement and how you allow your brokenness to become your gift to God. Love you friend!
I love that you’re sharing what’s happening with your word. They often seem to vanish into the sunset of January’s end.
That yours is alive and well and thriving?
It’s a super sunny inspiration as winter drags on!
I’m so glad I dropped in this afternoon, friend! And that necklace … I LOVE!
I am so glad I could bring a little sunshine to the dull of winter. We actually had sunshine today, but oh boy is it cold!!! I love how God continues to teach me through my one word and so many other avenues. What I am realizing is that I am opening myself to Him more and more and this is the result. It is amazing! I love when you drop by! Praying your week has many more sunshine moments.
Mary, isn’t it true that this journey is messy!! It’s painful at times and we may begin to want to throw in the towel when it gets hard. But this brokenness, it is what God needs to be able to work Himself out in us. Oh, the lessons I am learning. With the new book I am reading I am coming face to face with my flaws, and how I have gotten trapped in this notion of perfection, and constantly striving to please others. It’s hard at times to realize how far I have strayed from where I once was. At the same time there is a sweet restoration when I remember my confidence lies in Him and that my freedom comes from Him alone and I can be free to simply be me.
Amen! Your words ring true-sweet restoration when I remember my confidence lies in Him and that my freedom comes from Him alone. I love that! God has so much to teach us and so much work to do in and through us. I pray we will continue to open ourselves to the possibilities of all God has to offer and when the nudge comes we embrace it with open arms. Thank you for being such a blessing!
DEAR Mary – You don’t even know how much you shine! Your encouragement to others sheds light along sometimes dark paths when we are uncertain of our future or the way God is taking us (me!). Thank you for that.
Thank you also for being real. My favorite people are those who don’t pretend to have it all together because I can SO relate!
Finally, I love, love, LOVE that necklace. Can you tell me where you ordered it? It has Patti written all over it.
Blessings to you my friend,
Patti- You just made my day. Thank you for turning around and encouraging me with your sweet words. As for being real, I have questioned several times this year if my word for 2015 is supposed to be “real” because God has been calling me to share some of the messy and it has been hard. I will send you the link for where I got the necklace through a Facebook message. I just requested to be your friend! 🙂 Thank you for being here and for making me feel like I just got a new friend!