I know January has passed and most people are beginning to realize that those resolutions they set for themselves are harder to accomplish than they thought. I prefer to toss aside the idea of New Year’s Resolutions and focus on a word of the year.
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February and March seem to be the months you begin to feel defeated because you are barely into the new year and already failing to stick to your goals. You get frustrated at yourself for giving up or forgetting those promises you made to yourself.
Let me let you in on a little secret of mine…I hate New Year’s resolutions.
Hardly anyone I know ever sticks to them. They leave you beating yourself up and feeling bad for not completing them. Now, don’t get me wrong…I love the idea behind them.
Setting goals for yourself is awesome! I just don’t like that we feel like we have to do it once a year. I set small goals for myself throughout the year that way I know I can achieve them.
No New Year’s Resolutions for Me
What I like to do instead of having lofty new year’s resolutions is choose a word of the year (or phrase) to be my guiding focus and theme for the year.
I don’t just randomly pick a word or get them from other people. I spend quite a bit of time praying and contemplating what I want my focus for the year to be.
The reason this post is coming to you in February instead of January like I had hoped is because it took me a little longer through prayer and seeking what God has for me this year.
This past year I have struggled with something I have never really dealt with before.
Not just any fear but like crippling, joy stealing, irrational fear. Thankfully, God has helped me overcome my fear! Praise the Lord!
Through all the fear and stress I began asking God what my word of the year should be. I kept getting 2 words.
Usually I literally get A Word of the year. I kept praying over these words to narrow down which one would be the theme of my year. I never got clarification on just one word.
Instead He kept showing me these 2 words through conversations with others, scripture, sermons and even TV. I knew this year my word of the year would actually be a 2 word phrase
It was perfect after having struggled with fear over the past year so much. I had spent so much time focused on how to get rid of the fear that I had neglected to seek its antithesis; Peace.
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.John 16:33 NKJV
His Perfect Peace
So, this year I am seeking His Peace through everything! Whether that be an occasional fear that pops up, life situations, job, marriage. Whatever comes my way I am seeking peace through Christ in all things.
This year started out rough for various reason that are quite intimate and personal. Through it all I have clung to my phrase “Seek Peace.”
I must say it has been such an amazing year despite everything that is chaotic around me. I am truly at peace. It is refreshing!
As a result of this peace that passes understanding I have joy through the struggles. My relationship with Christ is so renewed it is deepening everyday and I am loving it.
How to Choose Your Word of the Year
Now, you’re probably thinking, “Well, Morgan that sounds great and wonderful! I’m so happy for you but how do you get your word of the year?”
Well, it’s rather simple if you know where to look. I always start by praying in December or January about what God would have me focus on and learn over the next year.
I take time daily to just be in silence before God and ask him to reveal to me what he would want for me.
Sometimes through this time of silence I hear the word(s) from Him, other times he directs me to a piece of scripture and sometimes he just makes it so obvious by placing a specific word into every facet of my life.
Prayerfully Plan Your Word of the Year
This year I received an amazing planner from Prayerful Planner. I was gifted this planner by Courtney over at The Simple Mom Blog and it has been such a blessing with my word of the year. Also, if you are looking for an awesome, Godly and encouraging Mom blogger to follow then Courtney is your girl!
The planner has a whole portion dedicated to your verse and word of the year. It has also helped me with my word studies that I do to better understand words within scripture.
My Verse for the Year
I try to find a verse to go along with my word or one that led me to choosing the word. This becomes my theme verse for the year. I look back at my word and verse often throughout the year as a reminder.
Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.John 14:27
Tips for Finding Time for Quiet Time
As a stay-at-home mom it is often hard to find a moment to sneak away and spend time in silence with God. This is where you have to get creative. Here are a few ways I have found to spend time with God ALONE!
- Wake up at least 30 minutes before my kids
- Ask my husband to watch them while I soak in the tub in silence (this is my favorite)
- Wait until I put the kids to bed
- Strategically put the kids down for a nap at the same time
Does every time you spend with God need to be alone and in silence?
God meets us where we are; in the thick of the mess. Often times I spend time with God while my kids are awake and watching cartoons, playing or eating.
Sometimes it looks like me reading the Bible with my toddler and teaching him about who God is. Don’t feel discouraged if you can’t find the time for being alone. God isn’t picky about how you spend time with Him. He just wants time with you.
Seek Him and His heart for your word of the year. Once I have my word of the year I write it down somewhere (usually kinda nice and artsy like).
How My Word of the Year Changes My Perspective
This practice has helped my spiritual walk grow and it has given a clear purpose for the year.
Rather than feeling defeated for not completing my resolutions, I feel empowered by my theme for the year. The funny thing is as I go through the year with my word as the focus I tend to see how it applies to other words and parts of my life.
I have loved spending my new year focused on God and what He has for my life rather than focused on myself and how I can better my life. It really does change my perspective on life and helps keep God at the center.
Do you have a word of the year? What is your word for the year? Let me know in the comments below!