A very hard 2019 is now under my belt. Normally somewhere around October the Lord starts to stir my spirit towards a word for my upcoming year. It takes a while for me to see and hear what He wants to teach me.
Now first of of all, I know what a lot of you are thinking… “A word for the year Jen? Really? You actually do that?” Some of you may have never heard of such a thing, and that’s ok! I had never heard about it until one day, I did! And then, when I did hear about it, I was in the first camp! It reminded me of a terrible New Years resolution idea. “Count me out! The last thing I need in my life is something else to make me feel like a failure!” I KNOW you understand because we’re all human, but there was one woman in my life at the time who did something similar to a word for a year. She focused on a verse for the year. I watched her live out her life that whole year with focus. The Lord spoke to her and took her on a deep spiritual journey and her peace drew me in to the idea.
Before you join the “word for a year” or the “verse for the year camp” hear me out. This is not something to take lightly. This is a whole year of focus! 365 days…8,760 hours! Let’s take into account that you need to sleep. If you’re a good sleeper like me you tend to get 8-9 hours, so lets say 8 hours average. That leaves you with 5,840 hours open for God to speak to you anywhere, anytime, anyplace, about one word. He can teach you anything in any way he needs to for you to go the depths of where he wants to take you. This is not a quick, whatever decision!! That’s why I take so long to discern the Lord on this. This is good! This is what brings us to the next level in our relationship with him! Digging deep, getting to know his heart so specifically that nothing can deceive you about it.
I’ve only been pursuing this discipline for about 3 years. Words that I have delved into these past few years are rest and peace, humility and prayer, gratitude and freedom. As you can see from my list there seems to pairs of words. I would begin with one word, and then the other word would take shape as the year progressed. They fit into one another to help me complete my puzzle. Finding true rest is to find peace in Christ. The only way to understand and get a hold of biblical humility is through prayer and watching Jesus walk the walk. And in my gratefulness, my sprit found a freedom from negativity. That’s just me. Your journey will have it’s own fullness for you. Just be open to what the Lord has to give you.
Let me encourage you. If the Lord is speaking to you about this, I would advise lots of prayer and self evaluation. My words stemmed from what was missing in my relationship with God or other life imbalance. This process has been hard, but beautiful and fruitful.
If you decide to take the plunge, take some time. Your year doesn’t have to be from January – December. It doesn’t even have to be a year really! He may bring your focus to a close earlier than a year, or you may discover that God’s not done with you yet and a year has already past. Just be open. Be available.
Our God is good, faithful and true!