Finding Beauty in Tension

I chose to be part of the OneWord365 movement this year – the idea being that instead of making New Year’s resolutions, you prayerfully select a single word and focus on it for a full year, noting how it influences your life each day. I chose “harmony” as my word for 2013. This is my update on how it’s going.


Did you ever buy a new car and suddenly it seems every third car you see on the road is the same make and model as the one you just bought? (Excuse me, when did the whole world decide to buy a Toyota Prius??)

That’s how it is for me with HARMONY.

Everywhere I turn, I’m noticing this word. I see it referenced in the Bible, I come across articles that address it. Even in conversation, harmony comes up regularly.

That tells me this is definitely a concept I need to focus on.  

One of the best discussions out there about harmony is the one Keith Jennings started in his series of essays on “Root Notes”.  (I encourage you to read what he has written. It’s very thought-provoking!)

He points out that harmony, from a musical perspective, is the co-existence of two or more notes held together by a root note. “Beauty in tension” is how he puts it.


Then he carries the metaphor over to the rest of life, explaining that in a similar way, we must co-exist and blend with others while staying true to the voice we’ve been given.

As we identify our priority, our passion, our theme in life – we find our root note. Then as we center the rest of our lives around it, we achieve harmony.

As Keith says, “Nothing surprises or delights our ears like simple or advanced harmonies.”

So here’s where I went with it:

For this season of my life, if I want to experience harmony, I believe my root note, my theme, needs to be: Trust God.

  • If I can trust God to be good and to always have my best interests in mind, I can rest, knowing that nothing that happens to me is beyond His control.
  • If I can trust God to redeem any circumstance, I can relinquish my regrets to Him when they start to overwhelm me.
  • If I can trust God to be the healer of broken relationships, I can have hope for the future.

OneWord2013_HarmonyIf I center everything I do on the knowledge – the root note – that God can be trusted, then rest, relinquishment, and hope will follow, completing the chord and creating a lovely harmony.MonthlyOneWord150

What would you choose as the root note for your life right now? How would you go about aligning other aspects of your life with it? Please share in the comments below. 

About Diane Rivers

Diane is a native Floridian whose career as an FBI Agent got her transferred to the North. She's retired from that gig now and "repurposed" as a freelance writer, author, and sometimes poet who blogs about the bumpy, bone-jostling ride of her “workaround” life. She loves Jesus, her family, black coffee, kayaking, biking, and hiking, and she looks forward to eternity with the One who will make all things beautiful. (Ecclesiastes 3:11).

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