One Word for 2013

Oh, hello there. It’s been awhile. I’ve been doing some deep thinking about my space here, and also some serious avoiding, but the truthiest truth is that for me, writing is healing. I need to let it be so, without other values attached to it. I am trying to let it be simple. Thank you for coming along, and for your patience with me.


I did One Word last year, when my wobbly bloggy legs were just starting to pull me up and into this new online world.

I chose Rest. In short, it was a bit of a flop.

“Rest” was a decision based on should. I’ve been told I should rest more, be OK with just sitting and being. But as a friend said recently, there’s a fundamental difference between a proactive and passive goal. Rest is just the absence of busy, and I’ve been learning about that for a few years now. God’s there on that journey with me, but I didn’t need that word last year. Not really.

But this year?

This year, a word has chased me around relentlessly — a word with which I’m deeply uncomfortable. It’s a word that exposes all the vulnerability issues I have, it confronts core beliefs; it scares me.

Which, I can only assume, means it’s my 2013 One Word. Whether I like it or not.

So, my One Word resolution for 2013: Worthy.

I’ve already begun reciting it as a mantra, as a holy chant, when shame starts creeping in or I feel less-than. Worthy. worthy. worthy. I’m worthy of love. I’m worthy of belonging. I’m worthy of friendship and hope and beauty.

Right now, it’s repetition with the hope of eventual belief.

I’ve had some issues with this word, but discovered recently how elemental it is to deep relationships and the meaning in my every day. Because to the degree that I believe I’m worthy, I can pass the truth of worthiness to those I love the most.

It’s not easy for me.

Because until now, when I thought “worthy,” I understood it as “deserving.” But my evangelical upbringing taught that we deserve death, destruction and punishment. No, how could I deserve anything good?

But I’ve discovered that worthiness isn’t the same as deserving. I may deserve punishment and I may not, but worthiness? I am worthy because God says so. I am loved because God says so. I am needed because God saw fit to create me and put me here, on this earth, to be an instrument of His love. There is no striving to live “a life worthy,” because it already is. I am worthy, right now, no qualifications, because God has ordained it.

And really, who am I to argue with that?

Worthy now. Loved now. Needed now. I am worth infinite love and radical grace. I am worthy.

And so are you.

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10 comments on “One Word for 2013

  1. Leanne Penny says:

    Yes, yes, Yes!

    My word is trust and well…today is all about realizing that sometimes forward motion in these areas involves sifting through painful baggage for a while… yuck. But ultimately yes, good stuff.

    • Yes, exactly Leanne. I think we’re brave for choosing words that make us explore those not-so-pretty areas, yes? Because you’re so right — sifting through will ultimately lead to more beauty and more truth. Here’s to doing hard things in 2013!

  2. Gina says:

    Amen sister! Have you listened to Brene Brown’s TED talk about vulnerability? She talks about the idea of feeling worthy as part of what differentiates whole hearted people from others. It’s really good if you have a chance to listen. I like that you made the distinction between deserving and worthy. It’s all about the value He attributes to us, thank God! I love reading about what He’s doing in your heart.

    • Yes, Gina! I’ve watched both her talks (you’ve seen both, right? the most recent one is also SO good) several times. And yes, I thank God that it’s about what he says, not me or anyone else. When I think of it in those terms, it seems so simple: I’m here, and therefore, I matter. Yet I have to keep repeating it all the same.

  3. HopefulLeigh says:

    You are indeed worthy, friend! Excited to see how this truth sinks down deep in the coming months.

  4. Rachel says:

    Thank you for introducing me to the distinction between worthy and deserving. This may be a life changer for me…. Your words and your journey are like a voice in a seemingly empty cave echoing “hello! i’m here, too!” in the deepest part of me. It’s nice to not feel so alone.

    • Oh, this makes me so glad, Rachel. Thanks for reminding me why I write and put my thoughts out there. If just one person thinks “me, too!” then what I’ve done here is worthwhile. (And even if not, I’m still worthy! And repeat.)

  5. Jules says:

    Yes. 🙂
    Did you know we showed Brene Brown’s first TED talk to our Journalism students today? Good stuff all around.

  6. Love your word lady. Reading my first Brene book now. Can’t wait to talk about it in real life with you. 🙂