Do you pick a word and scripture for your year? One that will define thoughts, direct decisions, and help discern necessary and unnecessary activities for the year? I do. And I finally have my 2019 word and scripture picked out.
Each November and December, I take time to reflect in the current year and pray about the upcoming year. These last two months, I’ve been stuck on the word “wholehearted” and the scriptures Jeremiah 33:3 and Joshua 1:8-9. Since I can’t find one more important than the other, I just have to laugh and have two scriptures with the word “wholehearted”.
The word and scripture are the foundation for my decisions and activities, though in recent years the meaning I originally believed and the meaning the word took on were a bit different. This year I am setting fewer goals and letting my word and scripture guide me in each moment. I’m going to live more in the present and less five years from now to see if that makes a difference. Since what I’ve been doing has worked internally but not tangibly, I figured it was time for a bit of a switch up.
Merriam-Webster defines “wholehearted” as:
It can be used as an adverb, and has the following antonyms and synonyms:
And if you want some more synonyms, they’ve got you covered!
Thoughts About My Word
When thinking of my word for the year, I ask myself questions like:
- What did I lack this year that I would have liked to see in my life?
- What qualities would I like to demonstrate more or add to my life?
- What areas am I slacking in that I need to pick up the pace to see my five year goals played out?
- Is there a theme to why I didn’t or did reach my goals?
In thinking about the last few years, I’ve had a variety of words and outcomes and each year I’ve been a bit surprised by how truly applicable the word has been to the events of the year despite the years being so different from what I expected entering into them. The words of the last five years have included (I originally started in 2012 by choosing three words as a theme for the year):
- 2014: Focus, Consistency, Preparation
- 2015: Celebration, Legacy, Rebirth
- 2016: Sacrifice, Surender, Assembly
- 2017: Order
- 2018: Rooted
As I thought about this year, I wanted a completely different outcome than in the past years. I didn’t want to take a big risk in the year or make a huge life change. I didn’t want to expect great changes internally (that was what the last three years have involved). I wanted to see me build upon what I’ve set as a foundation these last five years and grow in every way – well, not physically unless we’re talking height! I want to grow internally (emotionally, mentally), grow my skills, grow my ministry, grow my parenting, grow my community involvement, and grow my friendships. I want to see all the roots that have been digging down deep now blossom and sprout buds, flowers, and fruit above the surface. How does one do that?
A new level of consistency.
A deeper commitment to my faith, my family, my business, and my world.
A stronger resilience when met with unforeseen obstacles.
A new depth.
Usually once I have my word, I then look for scriptures using the word in some form. However, this year I didn’t feel that was the path. It was going to be a scripture that showed me how to be wholehearted about my life ands its activities. I started looking through scripture but I kept getting stuck on two that I’ve been mulling over for months.
Joshua 1:8-9 NKJV
“This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.””
Jeremiah 33:3 NKJV
“‘Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.’”
Monday night, Christmas Eve, I saw the cause and effect of the scriptures. Do you see it?
If I do what Joshua says, then I will see Jeremiah come to pass.
With this, I knew I had my scripture.
Now that I’ve defined my word and scripture, I will put them to paper in a creative way and hang them where I can see them throughout my living spaces: home, car, phone. I’ll be sure to share them with the people in my life who hold me accountable, and I will begin using them as I accept or decline invitations, think of which events to attend, and consider who to spend time with. Moving forward, I will not be spending any time on things I am not wholeheartedly engaged with or people I am not wholeheartedly interested in having in my life. I am ready for a complete change from doing things to prevent others from feeling bad or sad, from saying yes for political reasons, and from doing things half-heartedly because I am afraid of disappointing myself or God. After all, doing something without my full commitment is like not showing up anyway.
We’ll see how it turns out and if I’m right that how I’ve been doing things hasn’t worked. I am aware some things take time to show themselves effective, so I could be wrong about the past years when it comes to my overall life. However, I desire to see tangible results a year from now and this feels like a good change for doing so.
If you have a word and / or scripture for the year, share it in the comments below.