31 Days: Live Intentional {Day 1} — Beginning Inspiration

by Lisa on October 1, 2011

“I began these pages for myself, in order to think out my own particular pattern of living, my own individual balance of life, work and human relationships. And since I think best with a pencil in my hand, I started naturally to write. I had the feeling, when the thoughts first clarified on paper, that my experience was very different from other people’s. (Are we all under this illusion?) My situation had, in certain ways more freedom than that of most people, and in certain other ways, much less.

Besides, I thought, not all women are searching for a new pattern of living, or want a contemplative corner of their own. Many women are content with their lives as they are. They manage amazingly well, far better that I, it seemed to me, looking at their lives from the outside. With envy and admiration, I observed the porcelain perfection of their smoothly ticking days. Perhaps they had no problems, or had found the answers long ago. No, I decided, these discussions would have value and interest only for myself.”

—The opening words penned by Ann Morrow Lindbergh in her Gift From the Sea. I love this book. It is one of my favorites. It’s the kind of book I need to read every year. The kind that makes me stop, and think. The kind that makes me reevaluate my everyday routines. The kind that makes me hunger for a simpler way of living—a more intentional life. But more often than not, reading (anything), stopping to think, evaluating routines of any sort, and more specifically, intentional living seems to elude my daily existence. It all gets pushed aside during the business of conventional, contemporary life.

This past spring helped to usher in three new chapters in my life—the one year anniversary of my Mother’s death, a new job, and a new favorite book. While those three may not seem to have much in common, they have, each in their own way, brought up a reoccurring word/theme. The word: Intentional. The theme: Live eucharisto—live thankful—live intentional

Two days ago, at Nesting Place, I stumbled across an invitation to 31 Days of Change. The challenge: blog for 31 days in a row. The concept, although scary & daunting, intrigued me as I’ve been meaning type out more of my stories and contemplations. Like Lindberg, writing helps to clarify my musings, but, unlike Lindberg, I’m worried about what I will have to say, or share—and that no one will give a rip roarin’ winkle. I have no sure-fire cohesive thoughts or ideas. I have no grandiose plans. I don’t have any concrete topics—other than what it will look like to explore completing a project—31 days in a row of something—ANYTHING. 31 one days of living intentionally. 31 days to write down thoughts and ideas. 31 days to explore a more substantial concept other than, “What am I going to cook for dinner?” 31 days to come up with a manifesto of a God-inspired, God-filled life. 31 days to be proactive. 31 days. 31 days.

Join me as I explore what it looks like to think/live intentionally. And, who knows, maybe at the end I’ll be able to say:

“But as I went on writing and simultaneously talking with other women, young and old, with different lives and experiences—those who supported themselves, those who wished careers, those who were hard-working housewives and mothers, and those with more ease—I found that my point of view was not unique. In varying settings and under different forms, I discovered that many women, and men, too, were grappling with essentially the same questions as I, and were hungry to discuss and argue and hammer out possible answers. Even those whose lives had appeared to be ticking imperturbably under their smiling clock-faces were often trying, like me, to evolve another rhythm with more creative pauses in it, more adjustment to their individual needs, and new and more alive relationships to themselves as well as others.”


What is 31 Days? Read my other posts in this series here.

700+ 31 Days Participants

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

bellaartgirl October 2, 2011 at 6:36 am

Lovely post – I think I will join you friend!

Lisa October 2, 2011 at 6:49 am

Wow! Yeah! I didn’t even know anyone, besides me, looked at this Mom, net Mom blog! Your comment was quite a surprise—but a nice one! I’m looking forward to reading your 31 day challenge. And, if you decide to go public, let me know, and I’ll put a linky link to you.

So grateful to have you as a friend, and in my life! You are truly a Godsend!

Maria @ A Blooming Spirit October 2, 2011 at 8:10 am

I am definitely joining you to see where this road leads. Intentional is a word that has been coming up more and more in my life, and it has become part of my vocabulary. Look forward to reading more. Big hug,

Maria @ A Blooming Spirit

Susan Beth October 2, 2011 at 8:31 am

Thanks for stoping by my blog on proactivity – similar 31 day concepts to yours, I believe. Looking forward to seeing how you go through this next month!

Brunella October 2, 2011 at 9:09 am

From Italy: I’m very happy to stay together. A wonderful gift.
Blessed be.

Missional Mama October 2, 2011 at 11:00 am

My word this year is INTENTIONAL. I look forward to following along.
Would love to have you stop by my 31 Days of Missional Living

Melanie October 2, 2011 at 5:48 pm

What a great topic! I’m looking forward to reading more of your blog posts! Great reminder to my heart :)

I would love for you to stop by if you have time. I’m writing about 31 Days to Love your Neighbor….

Jen (Balancing Beauty and Bedlam) October 5, 2011 at 9:31 am

Love that you have taken on the challenge of being intentional – something so near and dear to my heart. Can’t wait to catch up with your posts. :)

Sharon October 9, 2011 at 5:19 pm

I just put both books you mentioned on hold at my library. I think I first learned about being intentional when I did a year long missions internship. The city I lived in was kind of hippie-ish and there were people doing what they called “intentional living.” Which meant totally randomly people were living together. In one house there was a married couple, a refugee, a single mom and her toddler, a special needs woman and a single woman working in ministry. I got to live with them for a few weeks and it was so interesting! I came home hoping to recreate such a living situation for myself. Then I got married. To someone who would never go for that kind of lifestyle! But, that doesn’t mean that I can’t find other ways to be intentional!

Lisa October 10, 2011 at 11:17 pm

Both books are great! You will love them! I know I do! Enjoy!

And, I’m sure you will find away to intentional. God always seems to bring those things to the forefront. :)

Leave a Comment