Nancy Bentz reminds women to break some things --some negative habits-- at the start of each new year.
You’d think I had taken “If it ain’t broke, break it…” as my resolution for the last half of 2013!
While reaching for a long Christmas storage container overhead, I managed to knock off the shelf an old cardboard box. The stomach-dropping tinkling sound when it hit the floor reminded me that inside were the half-dozen tissue-nestled family Christmas mugs. Old mugs. Did I say toddler and childhood Christmas mugs? Thirty-year-old family Christmas mugs? Broken. Every single mug in the box.
Then, while hanging a few specially chosen ornaments on our simplified version of a Christmas tree, I managed to miss the branch with the hook and one special ornament looked like the shattered image in the photo above. Except it was orange. With green leaves. A Georgia peach ornament, purchased as a special memento of our 35th anniversary trip to Savannah two years ago. I knew it was a sign when the tag indicated that the factory – believe it or not – is in Spokane, my hometown! Eagerly looking for the address to hopefully buy a replacement, I was met with the news that they aren’t open to the public and I should return to the retailer where I purchased it. Yeah, right. Savannah, GA…Spokane, WA. Not exactly in the next county.
Apparently I had finely honed my breakage skills by Christmastime since I had moved up to the special things that carried a lot of meaning.
But I didn’t start there…
Nosirreebob. I launched my case of the dropsies back in the summer by knocking my acrylic round-belly summer beverage pitcher out of its resting place. Hit the floor right on the handle. Now you see it. Now you see it busted off. I was not happy…
Add to the list a chip out of one of my Polish pottery plates and a piece of irreplaceable stemware with a nice long crack. I’m still using the plate, but the city landfill has my cherished mugs and Arby’s goblet. (For those of you who collected Arby’s Christmas stemware back in the day, you understand! Can’t get another one).
All those incidents reminded me of why I do not make New Year’s resolutions!
No doubt we weren’t seven days into 2014 before the tinkling sound of broken resolutions filled the air like Christmas carols did just three weeks earlier.
So am I saying that I, nor anyone else, should bother making a promise to better themselves? Heck, no. That’s a necessary part of stretching and growing, learning and wising up.
Will we fall short? Or outright bust some of those sincerely declared pledges? Does Nancy break Christmas mugs and Georgia peaches?
As we enter this fresh new year, it is my hope and prayer that many of our readers here at Whatever Girls will choose to break some things…
- Things like the injuring negative self-talk that is shame’s vocabulary.
- Taking as gospel truth what our feelings are screaming at us – when it isn’t the Gospel Truth at all.
- Continued hiding when God has made a way possible to step forward into His light and love.
And next month, those Inner Vows that are the promises we have made to ourselves in order to protect our heart from hurt. After all, doesn’t scripture tell us to “…guard your heart…”? (Proverbs 4:23) Indeed it does, but we are to guard our heart by God’s strength and motivation, not our own driven by the hurt.
The Christmas decorations are likely taken down and tucked away for another year, but we’re still unpacking the closet on this shame-based way of living that Jesus came to free us from. He entered and left our world (well, really His world!) marked by shame. How well He identifies with our frail humanity. Yet He overcame it all and His Holy Spirit resides within us believers today to enable us to overcome too.
And that’s the Gospel Truth.
Written by Nancy Bentz