faith, inspiration, life

One Little Word 2014

Back in 2007, Ali Edwards, gave birth to the concept of One Little Word™ and said this, “A single word can be a powerful thing. It can be the ripple in the pond that changes everything. It can be sharp and biting or rich and soft and slow.”

I also feel that one word can help guide our choices throughout the year and help with focus. It can be a co-pilot as we navigate our way through the year. Watching as it weaves in and out of our lives in moments unexpected or even moments planned.

In the past, I have joined in by embracing One Little Word™ – not by doing the workshop- just by picking a word and letting it weave its way into my life. Or so I thought it would. I picked a word and that was the extent of it. I was good at that kind of thing – you know, starting but never finishing. Not being fully in, well, I was all in for healing though. My words in the past were – Cultivate, Heal, and Inspire.

I have chosen those words based on where my journey was taking me and what was going on that particular year. I loved the words. I still do. I believe in them and the power they hold. But this year is completely different for me, in so many ways.

The uproar in my spirit started out at a low rumble but now, now I feel I am about to explode into this spectacular life! I feel completely open to what life has waiting for me and I know it is all because of the path I started in September 2013 at the invitation of a dear friend. Call it a rebirth if you wish, but something is stirring inside of me and I know it is bigger and better than any other time I have felt this kind of internal pull.

So when it came time to choose a new word that would represent my life in 2014, I was able to scribe a list of many words that I felt I could choose and be fine with them. If I felt drawn to a word more than another, I would circle it. Some words were crossed out easily while other words were starred and circled. I felt drawn to one word in particular but I wanted to read the list to my husband just for his thoughts. And I was quite curious to see how aligned he and I really were.

I didn’t share which one I was drawn to most, but I did let him know the few that were starred and circled. And even before I shared that information with him, he chose the word that I was drawn to! I couldn’t believe it! I knew it was a sign that I had to go forward with the word!


I could explain why that was the word at the moment but let’s just trust for a moment.

I was sitting down to write a blog post about my One Little Word™: Foster; when I literally heard a voice whisper to me, “No. That’s not your word.”  I looked around to see if someone was around, nope. I had the house to myself and the cats can’t talk in anything but meow, so what was this voice and where was it coming from?  I felt a tug in my heart but started back to writing my blog post about Foster when I heard it again.  This time the voice said clearly, “No. Not the one. Rise. Rise is your word.”

So I kind of chuckled and deleted everything I had already typed about Foster and went straight to Merriam Webster to read the definition of Rise:

1rise intransitive verb 

: to move upward

: to become higher

: to slope or extend upward

That’s when it hit me. I remembered back when I was working with my life coach, I often talked with & told her that RISE was a word that kept coming to me. This happened later in 2012 and early 2013. Repeatedly, I would find myself writing the word rise on notepads or in my day planner and in chats with my life coach. I felt it so strongly back then but could not really understand why I was getting this word over and over again. We tried to hash it out but it wasn’t really fitting in or making sense – at the time.

RISEwmBut now?  Oh now it makes PERFECT sense to me and I know now that it was meant for me. Further in the definition of rise, a list is written and I will share some that were signs that this was, in fact, my word for 2014:

1 a :  to assume an upright position especially from lying, kneeling, or sitting
– If you know me at all, you know that I have been battling morbid obesity for 20 years. I have tried over and over again to make a change but failed continuously. Over the past few weeks, I have been moving a little bit more each day. RISE – get up and move. It doesn’t matter how long, just stop sitting in the chair, laying on the couch, wishing away obesity. It’s not gonna work until you put in the work! It doesn’t matter how long, how far. It is just important that I get up… that I RISE.
4:  to respond warmly
– I think that I have always been a person who responds warmly but it seemed to be shadowed with regret, fear, insecurity. And now that I am releasing those words from holding me hostage, I find that I am able to respond even more warmly than before. RISE to meet the outpouring of love and connection without a hidden insecurity staining it.
5 chiefly British :  to end a session
– Interesting one, right? To end a session. What session? I refer you back to number four above. Ending the session of self-deprecation, self-loathing, shame, insecurity, fear, anxiety. Just stop it already. It has crippled me long enough. Time to end that session once and for all. RISE.
6:  to appear above the horizon
– This one might not be as apparent to some as we generally think about the sun rising not a person appearing above the horizon unless we are watching some John Wayne movie. But this one struck me to mean like the sun, I must RISE. I must appear above the shallow horizon that I have set for myself in the past. To move further on and know there is so much more waiting for me past the horizon. Soar. RISE. Shine.
7 a :  to move upward :  ascend
– Naturally, this means that I have to continue my mountain climb in order to receive the entire fruit offering at the top. It is waiting for me. No hidden agendas. No expectations. No judgments. Just there, waiting for me to move upward. RISE. In every aspect of my life.
b :  to increase in height, size, volume, or pitch
– Stand tall young Jedi. Know your worth. See your potential. Believe in your ability. RISE.
9 a :  to become heartened or elated <his spirits rose>
– This is so obvious to me. What this means for me personally is to continue my walk with Jesus. Stay grounded in my church family and the foundation they have built for all others to come and be a part of it. To open myself up and let the love in as it raises me up. I become elated in their presence and my heart is overflowing with so much joy and belonging. RISE to be more like Jesus. I am because He is.
b :  to increase in fervor or intensity
– To RISE and follow my passions and let my dreams blossom into reality. Stop having a vision and letting it fizzle out. Follow through. Increase the desire to become righteous in WHO I am and let it be. Also, increase the movement for physical healing.
10 a :  to attain a higher level or rank 
– Ok, I don’t really have any intentions of joining the military (God bless them! My full respect and gratitude) but this one pulled at me for the simple fact that I want more out of my life. To attain a higher level of being, period. To follow through on some of my intentions, goals, aspirations and live it out not just in my head and in my heart but RISE above all that dares to hinder me again.
b :  to increase in quantity or number
– Love. Pure and simple. Perfect in its simplicity. Increase in quantity the lives I touch through love, healing and connection. To understand and listen and be. To watch change happen to those around me because it is just too much pain to remain the same. RISE above all walls that people have built and help heal their broken spirits through loving kindness. To increase the number of people that I can convince that they are worthy.
11 a :  to take place :  happen
– Self-explanatory. RISE in this life. Don’t sit on the sidelines watching and being envious of others enjoying their lives to the fullest. Drop the covering of shame and live out loud.
b :  to come into being :  originate
– Full restoration through spiritual awakening. Trusting God’s timing, God’s word, God’s love, God’s way. Understanding that He has plans to prosper me not harm me. Become whole again so that I can RISE and share His love, word and healing power with the rest of the world. It is extraordinary!
13:  to exert oneself to meet a challenge <rise to the occasion>
– Do I really need to explain this one? Ok, briefly. I need to lose weight to live and prosper and share all that God wants me to so I have to RISE to the occasion, exert myself to meet the challenges (and there are MANY) of doing this once and for all. 

There is a transformation taking place inside of me more so than EVER before in my life. It can only be explained by the love and grace that is God. I am easily bursting at the seams to sing His praise.

hallelujah-the-secret-30224016-500-366Be Empowered! RISE!!!!

Are you considering selecting a word for yourself (or letting one find you)? There’s no right or wrong. The main thing to remember is that this is your word. It’s not for your child, parent, partner, spouse, sister, etc.



And what do you do with this one little word?



You live with it. You invite it into you life. You let it speak to you. You might even follow where it leads. There are so many possibilities.


– Ali Edwards


2 thoughts on “One Little Word 2014

    1. Thank you Jannie. Not sure you know just how much you are impacting me and inspiring me to live richly. I aspire so much to walk the walk you do. I have great admiration and love for you. You are family to me. XO

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