I know what I need to do this year - I need to put my life on a diet - my eating, my finances, my lifestyle - but then I knew that last year and it didn't happen. What can I do differently so that next year when I sit down to write a similar entry, my words will be different? Instead of figuring out how to succeed, I want to be reviewing my success and figuring out how to duplicate it again for the coming year.
So On Jan 2nd, when I had my morning quiet time, that was my prayer. The answer is to have a focus - something simple that reminds me and helps me keep on track. So I turned to my bible app and did a search on Simplicity. That brought me to a 4 day devotional study that guides you to find a word - just one word - that will be your focus for the year. Pray and ask God to show you the word that he has for you. It can be anything, maybe one of the spiritual disciplines or one of the fruits of the spirit. Whatever it is, it should be meaningful and motivating.
In my case, my word is "need". Such a small, significant & powerful little word. As I focus on it, I realize that it cuts sharp like a knife. How do things measure up - are they an actual need or are they a want? Wow, my word calls me to a higher level of honesty with myself. Do I really need that, or is it more something that I want? If I give in to my wants, what effect does that have on my needs? Can I afford a particular want? I think that this is going to be a long journey, but very exciting. My word is simple and easy to use, applicable to so much that I am dealing with. I feel God will use this in a very powerful way. Already it has started to redefine my priorities, rethinking some of my long held beliefs.
So this is my focus for 2014. Need - the scale with which I will weigh my life for the coming year. Do you have a word? If you need focus the way that I do, then I invite you to join me. Ask God to show you what word he has for you, then sit back and be amazed at the power that can be found in a word - the power that God infuses into your life.
Psalm 119: 65 MSG
Be good to your servant, God; be as good as your Word
Train me in good common sense;
I'm thoroughly committed to living your way.
Before I learned to answer you, I wandered all over the place,
But now I'm in step with your Word.
You are good, and the source of all good;
Train me in your goodness.
Psalm 27:4 GNT
I have asked the Lord for one thing;
One thing only do I want;
To live in the Lord's house all my life,
To marvel there at his goodness,
And to ask for his guidance.