"I have come that they may have life, and have it abundantly."John 10:10
This verse has been on my mind a lot over the last few weeks as I've been reflecting on a question Anne Lamott's asks, “How alive am I willing to be?” A challenging question.
Over the same few weeks I’ve received a number of Christmas letters, catching me up on what friends have been doing throughout 2018. Its good to reflect on the year about to end and realise all we’ve fitted in, the highlights as well as the struggles we’ve come through. It's a way of recognising God’s faithfulness through it all and our own contribution to life. But I wonder how all that doing has changed our being?
What have I learned through having lived 2018? Am I still the same person I was at the beginning of the year or have I allowed this year to change me? Am I more alive than at the beginning of this year … more alive to life, to those around me, to God?
Or am I still clinging tenaciously to safety and security, to the familiar and known way? Its comfortable and it works but its hardly living life to the full.
I want to let go of the grip of perfectionism, to sing more, even if its off key, to dance more, even if its only in the kitchen, to worry less about my flabby arms and out-of-shapeness and embracing the moment. To be more self-aware and alert to my reactions and what they are telling me about myself; to be open to the lessons they have to teach me.
When Winston Churchill turned 80, the government commissioned a well-known artist to paint his portrait. After numerous sittings the work was finally finished and when it was unveiled at a public event in his honour, Winston was furious. He hated it. He railed against the fact that it made him look old and frail, which of course he was, but he couldn’t face the truth about himself. His reflection was more than he could accept so he had it destroyed.
As we reflect this Christmas on the One who came to give us life and give it to us in abundance, how alive are you willing to be? How open and vulnerable, curious, risk-taking, fun loving and passionate? How will you live 2019 differently?