New Word and New Year

It’s time for a new year so it’s time for a new word. If you are new to this idea the word of the year was something I was introduced to about a decade or so ago. The idea is that resolutions can be easy to accomplish or easy to fail at. Also, unless you are really good at crafting it then it probably only applies to one or two areas of your life. A word however can be far-reaching.

Last year my word was “willing”, and it was a good year to be willing. I wanted to be willing to do bigger things for God, willing to go deeper, be more obedient, or whatever else God wanted to do in and through me. I wanted to be willing to take chances in my relationships with my wife, daughter, friends, and so on. I wanted to be willing to try new things. Willing was good but if I am honest willing played to my strengths. I am naturally looking for a change and a little crazy. It is not a hard thing for me to be willing. It is not a bad thing to play to your strengths because they need work too. If we put all our energy into our weaknesses, then our strengths can start to wane. For this new year, the new and exciting 2022 I desire to stretch myself.

My word for this year is not a strength but a weakness. This year I will be intentional. I am naturally pretty good at reacting. I am pretty good at responding to something and getting things done. I am a doer. I am a mover and a shaker. I am not nearly as intentional as I would like. So, this year will be the year of intentionality.

I want to be intentional in my time with God, my wife, my daughter, my boys, my friends, my quiet time. At the end of the year, I want to be a more intentional person.

Jesus is a great example when we think about intentionality. In Luke 9:51 it says that Jesus set His face towards Jerusalem, but some translations add a little spice and say He was steadfast (KJV), resolute (BSB), fixed (LSV), either way, you slice it Jesus was determined and intentional, He was going to Jerusalem to take His cross and die for the sins of the world.

In Mark 10:13-16, Jesus is blessing children. The disciples in their grand wisdom try and stop this but Jesus was intentionally doing what He wanted so he became indignant. We could go on and on, but the point is Jesus was intentional about everything He did. There is also the thing about being conformed into the image of Christ (Rom 8:29) so it is not just a word but an attempt to be more like the Lord I love.

I would highly encourage you to pick a word. Find something that can fit into as many areas of life as possible and then go after it. An example would be healthy. Healthy while usually thought of in terms of physical can mean healthy relationships and a healthy view of God. You are only limited by your imagination and prayer life. So, find a word, and explore the possibilities.

Just a thought,

Mike

Willing

2018 has come and gone and that means it is time for a new word. If you don’t know I am not a fan of New Year’s resolutions. I feel like they are lacking but a word, a word can carry so much more than a resolution can. For example, maybe you decide your resolution is to lose weight. Great have fun with that, but what about eating right, maintaining a proper body image, learning what type of daily eating works best for you, loving your neighbor, being a good parent, a good spouse, spending time receiving your identity from God. A resolution of weight loss cannot help you achieve those things but striving to live out the word healthy can. Healthy can be healthy relationships, a healthy body, and a healthy relationship with God. A word can carry so much more than a simple resolution can because it can be applied to every single area of your life and regardless of where you are at in life every area can always be improved on.

My word this past year was shalom. Not peace, but shalom. Shalom means more than peace it means soundness or completeness and I feel like this year was pretty sound. My relationship with my wife was better than ever, my daughter still likes me, we fostered another little boy who I still love dearly and cry for at times, but I am ok with the situation. I am almost done with my degree, and we are in the process of doing something huge and stressful but through it all, I feel content and fully at rest in Christ. It has been hard, but I have been able to keep going back to God to ask for His peace and soundness in my life. Like my past words (stronger, audacious, inspire, and indomitable) I will keep shalom with me and it helps it is tatted on my arm. I will keep going back to a desire to be complete in Christ, but it is time for a new word.

For 2019 I desire to be willing. If you know me, you might be thinking I don’t need to be any more willing but hear me out. Yes, I do love an adventure, but I am not always willing to do what I want or should. First, I want to be willing to have my faith make me uncomfortable. I want to be willing to do more for my wife and family. I want to be willing to do things I have not done so I can do things I have not done. I want to be willing to seek God so honestly that if He wrecks my plans, I am ok with it. I want to be willing to be open to new ideas and new ways of attacking life. I want to be willing to go or to stay. I am not going all Jim Carry in Yes Man, but you get the idea. I want to be willing.

It is not like the idea is way out there either. The disciples gathered and prayed for boldness. Paul prayed that he might be bold. I understand that bold and willing are two different words, but I want that same willingness that they had to ask for boldness. I want to be willing to seek God for direction, support, and blessing. I want to be willing to be told no to things I desire. Jesus says the Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak, and I want my spirit and my flesh to be willing. If an opportunity arises, I want to be willing to seize it (after prayer of course). I want to be willing to see what God would do this year. Who knows maybe nothing great or amazing happens, maybe I just find myself more willing to trust God and do hard things for my family. But maybe just maybe something amazing happens. Either way, I am willing.

Just a thought,

Mike