Have you picked one word to focus on? Now is the time!
A lot of people don’t like New Year resolutions. I get that.
- Resolutions are often too hard (or we would have already done them, right?).
- They’re usually too many.
- And they’re easy to forget about.
That’s why I like choosing one word instead. (Well . . . letting one word choose me–that’s usually how it works.)
- One word is simple.
- It’s easy to remember.
- And it’s unpredictable in the directions it can take you.
Only God knows what the year ahead holds for us. So at our invitation, he’ll guide us to a word custom-designed for our year to come.
That’s a good thing.
And a faith-building thing.
For example, when I chose “Breathe” in 2010, I didn’t know it would be the year both my parents would take their last breaths. When I chose “Venture” in 2012, I had no idea I’d be leaving my old religious heritage that year to branch out into something brand new. When 2014 brought “Compassion,” it both totally wrecked and expanded me at the same time.
And in this year of “Now,” God keeps nudging me to new ways of releasing worry and to a greater dependence on faith. (Here are 4 big lessons I learned about how to live in the now.)
For next year? I have ideas rolling around, but nothing is settled.
So I’m using what I learned with my OneWord 2015 “Now” to help me decide. Maybe this will help you, too.
3 STEPS TO CHOOSE ONE WORD
1. N – Notice God’s messages
Pay attention. God is already at work in you, doing new things, preparing you for new things.
Are you hearing repetitive messages on a specific theme lately? Does a particular song touch you deeper than others? Have you been drawn to a certain book or author?
God can work through any of these avenues. Dig out a single word among those messages. Stay present to his wisdom. It’s not something you sweat over, but something you notice and receive. Accept what comes without having to understand it fully. God will reveal more when the time is right.
- Quiet down and just be
- Don’t believe everything you think
- God stays the same every day
- Who will open the door today?
2. O – Only one thing
Keep your focus narrow. It’s better to give your full attention to one main word or concept than be distracted by a hundred little resolutions. Be most attentive to one thing at a time. This thing. At this time. With this person.
Your one word choice doesn’t have to be profound or complex. Keep it simple and relevant to this season of your life. It’s a step, not the complete journey.
When you welcome whatever comes in this one day—accepting it as your reality and being with it (even if it’s something that needs to change in the next moment)—you stay most in the presence of God. Once you own it now, he’ll guide you what to do with it next.
- Welcome whatever comes today
- In-between moments are enough
- Linger here—God’s timing is perfect
- Be today who you want to be forever
3. W – Withdraw anticipated outcomes
Release expectations now of where your one word will take you later. Let go of a specific outcome you may have in mind.
When you lay out too detailed a specific future (or conversely, linger too much in times past), you’re less alive for times present. Yes, still plan for the future (thankfully, because I love to plan!), but hold those plans loosely.
There’s no way you can predict how God will use your word. Just know this: God will honor your intentions to honor him through it. Trust that his grace will be enough.
Today is when God moves and where grace lives.
- Find grace in today (how to handle anxiety)
- Mercy is new every day. We are, too.
- Fast from the past to feast in the now
- Using the past and future wisely
Pray about receiving your word from God, then hand it right back to him.
Let him embed it into your life one relationship at a time, one day at a time, one situation at a time.
He knows what he’s doing. Now.
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Have you chosen One Word in the past? Do you have One Word for this year? Please share in the comments.
- 4 lessons on living in the now
- Top 10 Books from 2015 (+ a few extra)