2018 is only 14 short days away. The years seem to draw to a close quicker with each year I age. It’s in the last quarter of the year I begin to pray, watch and listen with anticipation, for the word and Bible verse which will become my focus for the upcoming year. I honestly don’t remember how or when I began this process. I do know it’s helped me grow in my walk with the Lord.
A dear friend, in 2015, sent me a surprise package. I love surprise packages! Inside was a book written by well-known author Debbie Macomber, “One Perfect Word”. Debbie shares insights from her journals corresponding to words chosen over 14 years of her life. We are kindred spirits when it comes to choosing a word.
I was surprised at how much the ins-and-outs of choosing our words paralleled. Like me, Debbie at the end of each year reviews and evaluates her past year. Pondering the goals she set for that year. Did she meet them? Did she miss the mark on some? Does she need to revamp or ditch others? I don’t make New Year’s resolutions or set goals per se. I do make a plan here or there as the year begins of things I would like to accomplish. Oops, guess those would be goals. I just don’t think of them as such. Too much pressure to succeed if I call them goals. 🙂
Debbie reads over her journal to get an overview of the past year; as do I. In fact, this is a favorite time for me. I pour a cup of coffee enhanced with my favorite creamer; grab my journal, a highlighter, a pen and next year’s journal. Once comfy, I open the journal and begin to read the journey of the past year. I highlight things which stand out. I note things in my new journal which the Lord impresses upon me to keep exploring. And of course, I add any additional insights Holy Spirit may bring to light as I revisit the journey traveled in the year. One of the reasons I love reading through my journal is the hand of my ever Faithful Friend is revealed with more clarity. I can see God’s footprints in every aspect of my journey that year.
Choosing a word for the year isn’t just for spiritual or religious reasons. I know some who choose a word for their own sense of accomplishment; to grow further their character, deepen relationships and provide a vision, if you will, for the coming year. For example, one might choose the word “Joy” simply to understand how to bring more joy to their marriage, their children, their work place, etc. The purpose of choosing a word is to immerse one’s self in that one word; to define it, to look at it from all possible angles and to discover practical applications of implementation. As a Christian I also desire this word to give insight, nurture and deepen my relationship with the Lord.
If you’ve never had a word which to contemplate, discover and focus upon, may I encourage you to give it a try this year. If a year seems overwhelming for one word, then perhaps a word for the month or the week might be a better place to start. “By picking one word, we start out with a simple ‘I can do that’, and we end up with richness far beyond anything we’ve ever imagined.” Debbie Macomber
In her book Debbie shares the idea of having a Christmas ornament made with that year’s word imprinted upon it. Each year as you place the ornaments upon your tree you have a reminder of God’s faithfulness. My hubby and I don’t do ornaments anymore. But……… I’m thinking coffee mugs. I can see myself in my comfy spot with my special mug, journal open, pen poised, ready to write revelations received while spending time reading God’s very Word. There’s no greater “Joy” than the anticipation of hearing a word, a message, from the Spirit of the One True God. As my collection of mugs grow I will have a testimony of God’s work in my life to share with others over cinnamon coffee cake and ….. You guessed it…… a cup of coffee.
If you will be choosing, or have chosen a word for 2018 it would really, really encourage me if you would share your word with me in the comment section.
May the Peace of Jesus fill your days this Christmas Season.
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things”. Philippians 4:8