I am known around our house for the phrase, “Own it.” The other day one of the girls asked me why I used that phrase. First thought, “Seriously, she doesn’t know why? Epic mother fail if she’s just now figuring this out!” Second thought, “Why do I use that phrase so much?”
We can all get in the habit of using phrases, but if we forget why, or fail to share with others the “why” behind the phrase, they serve little purpose than to expedite conversation, which is never really a good thing. My first use of the phrase, was in my journal about five years ago. I was in the midst of what felt like a dry valley. Life wasn’t clicking along as planned, I felt displaced at church, couldn’t quite find my “thing”, my “place”. The one thing God made clear during that time was the repeated message that HOME was where I needed to be. It was as if He was calling me to a quiet fellowship with Him, a place of solitude. As the journey continued I began to see some things in me I didn’t like, some patterns repeating I didn’t want repeated. As I moved toward the “greener pastures” I knew God was calling me to “own it”, to take responsibility for me-things I thought, my feelings, my words, my actions. We often say we are not responsible for others, but I’m not sure I believe that any more. I am responsible for pain or suffering or joy I cause another. I also realized I come from a family, both immediate and extended, that has a pattern of not taking responsibility for choices, for actions. On some level it is a part of all our sin nature. The problem is, when we don’t own it, we don’t deal with it, identify it, name it, lay it before the throne. Instead, we bottle it up. We seek to “put on a good face”. We in essence lie, lie to ourselves, to our families, to our friends, to those around us.
I began the process of “owning” it and I continue on the journey. It has become increasingly important to me to ensure my children are being taught to “own it”. I want them to recognize sin. I want them to see the joy or pain or sorrow they cause their heavenly Father, their dad and I, and those in their community. I want our home to be a place where we say “I am sorry.” Surprisingly, “owning it” has proven to be quite freeing. As I look within, pray for insight, conviction and discernment I am able to clearly see the good, the bad and the ugly. I am able to name my specific action. I am able to develop a new habit repeating those good actions/words or bring about lasting change by laying the negative at His feet and seeking His strength to end the behavior, to ask for forgiveness or to address my role. It frees me to leave the other person’s behavior, reactions, decisions, for them to address.
“Own it”. It will continue to be a catch phrase in our home. It will continue to be a topic of my journaling. Try it. If you are having trouble in your relationships, not succeeding at work, feel tired, have gained weight etc… stop and think. What behaviors are influencing/impacting/leading to the outcome? What specifically are you doing? Eating too much sugar? Own it. Admit it. Say it out loud. Take it to your heavenly Father and ask for help. Yelling too much? What are you angry or frustrated about? Get it? “Owning It”-it’s nothing more than being honest with yourself, taking responsibility for your actions, seeking forgiveness and guidance and doing something to change it.