Life is More Than Existence: Be Yourself Fully Alive

LIFE IS MORE THAN EXISTENCE

 

The word be can mean to exist, but life is more than existence. What about being alive to who I really am and how I relate to my surroundings and to other people? *This is an edited and updated version of a post from two years ago on my former blog.*

 

Fully alive

 

I could go about my day doing everything as a matter of routine without noticing what is around me, but it would be a very dull existence. Sure, my work would get done, but would I feel fulfilled? Would it make me happy?

 

When I do my work because I have to, there is very little meaning or fulfillment in it.

 

It’s so easy to notice all the things that are wrong and begin complaining about them. That accomplishes nothing except a bad mood that rubs off on anyone else near me. There have been days like this, and they usually cause a lot of stress. Looking for solutions might help, but often I am overwhelmed, thinking nothing will ever change.

 

A BETTER WAY

 

I could begin the day thanking God for giving me life, another day to live for Him. If I went about my day looking for the beauty in the small, ordinary, seemingly ugly and messy things, I might relieve some stress.  

 

If I went about my day looking for the beauty I might relieve some stress. 

 

It would certainly promote a better attitude about the things waiting to be done. When I live this way even the tasks that are not necessarily fun can bring me joy.

 

One Sunday morning I stayed home from church. The events of the past week exhausted me, and I needed some alone time. I looked around and couldn’t help but notice that my kitchen counters were spattered and stained. They looked awful. I got right to work cleaning them.

 

It took time and elbow grease to make them nice, but I actually enjoyed doing it. To me it was an act of worship because I knew the result would boost morale for the whole household and it drew me into giving praise to God.

 

clean counters

 

After cleaning the kitchen that morning, I spent the rest of my day relaxing, reading some Scripture, and creating art. I had been feeling overwhelmed with all the activity of the past week and knew there were still plenty of things that would need attention.

 

LIFE INCLUDES REST

 

Life is not just for working but our bodies also need rest. So I wrote this little poem helping me to remember to let go of all the worries and cares and just rest in Christ.

 

Rest, My Child

Rest, my child.
Let your worries cease.
I am with you.

Rest, my child.
Seek peace for today.
I am with you.

Rest, my child.
Wander no longer.
I am with you.

Rest, my child.
You’ll find safety here.
I am with you.
~gsw~

 

WHO AM I? WHO IS GOD CALLING ME TO BE

I exist as a beloved daughter in God’s sight. 

 

He created me to bring glory to Him ultimately, but also to enjoy His creation and my life. God has called me to be a writer, an artist, one who takes time to notice the beauty in every day, and to encourage others in whatever way I can.

 

I won’t do it all perfectly, and that’s okay because I don’t have to be perfect.

 

Striving to be someone I am not is useless. I only have to be myself, imperfections and all, because God takes all of me and makes beauty as only He can

 

This is the kind of “being” I want for my life.

 

I don’t want to just exist but to be fully alive!

 

What about you? How do you want to live?

 

I’m linking up with #FreshMarketFriday, #ThoughtProvokingThursday, #GiveMeGrace, #LMMLinkup, #InspireMeMonday, #SmallWonder, #IntentionalTuesday, #CoffeeforYourHeart

28 thoughts on “Life is More Than Existence: Be Yourself Fully Alive

  1. I love how you shared the experience of putting effort into clean kitchen counter tops. And I agree — everything we do for His glory is an act of worship!

  2. I want to live fully alive too. I can choose to make each day count and remember to give thanks for the gift of a new day. I want to let the ordinary become extraordinary by remembering that God is in every nook and cranny of our day. Thank you for the reminder of living for God tonight. Blessings!

    1. You’re right, Marvia. It is sometimes gut wrenching but God will see us through even those times. Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate your words.

      Many blessings to you, sweet sister! xo

  3. I love this post, Gayl! It seems to take some of us such a long time to give ourselves permission not to keep perpetually doing things all the time. When I retired 2 years ago I was tempted to jump in and do all those things that had been waiting for me for years right away so I could relax. Truth is that I would still be on that list if I had chosen that route. Instead, the Lord led me to go back to my love of writing, start my website/blog and work on the list in little pieces. I think He reminded me that in this life there will always be things to do, calling my attention away from the eternal, the refreshing. He wants us to know He has provided for that too and if we miss it, often we will miss Him in the small things of ordinary days.

    1. Pam, thank you so much for your encouraging comments. I’m glad that you are writing and blogging…

      I think God is reminding me of this, too: “I think He reminded me that in this life there will always be things to do, calling my attention away from the eternal, the refreshing.”

      Many blessings to you and may we both remember to look for him in the small things every ordinary day!

  4. Gayl- What truth! It’s a deliberate action to worship in the spite of a bad mood. This world gives ample opportunities to sour our mood, but choosing to be stuck on God’s truth and promises changes us. We stick out sometimes, don’t we with our positive moods in the midst of the junk happening around us. Thank you for reminding us that anything done with a mindset of God can be worship!
    Your #InspireMeMonday neighbor,
    Julie

    1. Yes, it does take determination to worship when in a bad mood, but it really is the best thing we can do. We do stick out sometimes, but if our attitude is positive maybe we stick out in a good way. Just as bad attitudes rub off on others, I think good ones do too! 🙂

      Thank you so much for your encouraging words, Julie. Many blessings to you!

    1. Yes, it does! I’m still learning to look for the beauty in all situations, but I’m making progress. 🙂

      Thanks for your encouragement. Many blessings to you, Carol!

  5. Attitude makes all the difference and no one can decide that for us! Love how you showed that a job, no matter how menial, when done unto the Lord is an act of worship. Blessings on your week, my friend!

  6. This is a vital reminder to do all we do for the glory of God! Thank you for writing today. Visiting from #inspiriememondays today and you have definitely inspired me to serve, love, and give with a renewed vision. 🙂

  7. The glory of god is a man fully alive. I’m not sure who said it first but my spiritual practice is transformed by its truth. I want, more than ever, to be fully alive. Thanks for the reminder Gayl. Not perfect but whole, yes and amen.

    1. Yes, Lisha, more than ever to be fully alive. We need to be people of God fully alive.

      Thank you so much for your encouragement, Lisha! I’m so glad we are learning to be fully alive with all our imperfections. Yes, not perfect but whole.

      Many blessings to you dear sister! so

  8. I’m not sure why it is so difficult to give ourselves permission to live life fully, but you are so right here. I wonder if we will ever truly comprehend the refreshment God offers in looking at every act as an act of worship.

    1. Thank you for your observations, Crystal. I don’t know why it’s so difficult. Maybe because we have really been shown the truth of it, that even the most menial tasks can be acts of worship.

      May God help us to see that and to be able to enjoy that refreshment that comes. Many blessings to you!

    1. I like that you are looking for laughter and praising God for it. I had not thought about that, but it’s a great idea. Just recently my grandchildren and I have done a lot of laughing and it’s been great!

      Thanks for visiting, Kelly. Many blessings to you!

    1. Susan I love your zest for life and how you enjoy so many things with your grandkids! It’s great, but I’m sorry you got some injuries out of it. I’m sure it’s all worth it!

      Many blessings to you! xo

  9. Love this reminder, Gayl, to not just be but to live fully alive. And with “rest” as my word of the year, your poem struck a chord with why I can rest … because Jesus abides with me. Thank you for sharing, friend. : )

    1. Crystal, I’m so glad you stopped by. Yes, rest is possible because Jesus is with us. I think my next word might need to be rest because I have a hard time doing it sometimes.

      Many blessings to you, dear sister!

  10. Hi Gayl! I found you on Holley Gerth’s linkup. The title of your post caught my attention because this is how I want to live each day. More than… I fail so often – still getting used to the empty nest with my three now living so far away – but God is faithful to bring along encouraging posts like this one to lift me up! Thank you for being faithful. 🙂

    1. Hi Pam! Nice to “meet” you! I’m so glad you stopped by. It is definitely hard for us moms to see our kids leave the nest, but we can trust God to watch over them. There will be struggles and hard times and wrong decisions made at times, but they are in God’s hands. I remind myself that He loves them more than I do.

      I’m so glad my post encouraged you today! Many blessings to you!

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