What is your word for the year? For several years now I have chosen a word for the year. In choosing I would ask God to show me what that word should be according to what His plans for me were. Just a little glimpse into what was ahead. I never had to put much thought into it myself, the word would just come to me. I’m okay with letting Him decide my word because of what Eph 2:10 says, ”For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do”.
Now that it’s been 4 years since I started this process, I thought I would go back and examine my word of the year and reflect on what it is that God was doing in me that year. I found it fascinating. In 2018 my word was Brave. Without going into detail, let me tell you bravery was something that I needed a lot of. Dealing with hard issues, facing them with strength that only my Father, Lord could have given me. In 2019 my words (2 for this year) were Change & Joy. And Yes, there was much change and much joy that year but the change didn’t always bring the joy. That is where I had to lean on Him for my joy and not my circumstances. In 2020 my word was Empowered. Wow, for a 58 year old woman to decide to go back to school and jump into some uncomfortable situations was empowering. God did that! He showed me that I was capable and if I depended on Him, He would make it possible. As 2021 has come to an end, I look at my word for this year, Simplicity. This year has been anything but simple in the eyes of what the world would call simple but in the spiritual realm, Simplicity was perfect. It has been a year of just settling into where He has me and just go with it without questions. 2021 was all about trusting Him and not worrying about it.
Now for 2022, my word is Discover. I could go wild with this word. What does it mean? Where is He leading me? I know he always wants the best for me so this could be exciting. And then I revert to, sometimes discovery is hard. That’s the human in me, planning, thinking, figuring it out in my own power. But I look back from just the last 4 years and see that He was at work in every detail. In 2020 & 2021, God worked out every step of the journey to empowerment and simplicity in my life. And one thing I can be assured of is that He doesn’t work without a plan in mind. So, what am I going to discover in 2022? I don’t know and I don’t have to know. But what I do know is this, God’s plan is greater than any plan I could imagine. According to Jeremiah 29:11-13, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart”.
The thing is, in each step of the last 4 years, He has opened doors, I have been uncomfortable, determined, fearful, relieved, felt alone, excited, sad and any number of other emotions but with each emotion, He asked me to move and do my part. The part that He was showing me in the moment. I couldn’t just wait and it fall in my lap, I was called to action.
How do I know if God is calling me? That question is one that everyone asks. Here are a couple scriptures that will tell you a little about that.
Proverbs 29:18 “ Where there is no revelation, people cast off restraint;
but blessed is the one who heeds wisdom’s instruction.” In other words if we’re not looking for his direction we will be wondering and stumbling all over the place but when we seek His instruction, He will reveal it.
Psalm 16:11 “You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” You will have joy and peace deep in your soul when you allow Him to fill you.
When you know God, you will find Freedom and Discover Purpose which will equal Making a Difference.
There are several steps to discovering your purpose:
- Scripture – Write down scriptures that have been a continued go to in your life. Take time to reflect on these. If you don’t have any that you can think of then search out scriptures that talk about who God is, how you came to be, what he expects from those who love him and so on.
- Journal on these scriptures – See if you can find a common theme and reflect on the times you have turned to them and what function they played in your life.
- Look up as many scriptures as you can find that will help answer questions such as: Why do I exist? What does God expect my response to His grace and salvation on my behalf? Where do I find my place in God’s story?
- Write out your biblical statement. Think outside the box, outside of your restraints. Look over your notes from the previous 3 steps and look for common threads or thoughts. Make this statement simple but focus on the “being” before you think about the “doing. A simple format could go like this:
I exist to ___________ so that ________.
This is just the beginning of the process but it’s a good start. Other steps would include exploring who God has created and shaped me to be. The beginning of finding the answer to this is through a timeline process.
Remember before when I said, “When you know God, you will find Freedom and Discover Purpose which will equal Making a Difference”?
I pray that you know God and Jesus as your Savior. If you haven’t given your life over to Him, I pray that you will find a church in your area or someone you know that is a believer and ask them to help you in the process of seeking God as your Savior.
We all have a sense of wanting freedom but the freedom in Christ is not what the world would call freedom. Freedom in Christ is all about peace and reassurance that you are loved. A freedom that even in the hard times, and there always will be here on earth, that you will have a calmness about you that is undeniable.
And the making a difference. You don’t have to be a Christian to want to make a difference in this world. But the difference that you can make as a Christ followers will be mind blowing to you as well as those around you. None of us are perfect, so don’t even expect but we can be made perfect through Him.
Without discovering your purpose, you will never make a difference. At lease not one that will be fulfilling. He has a very specific one just waiting to be filled by you.
So I ask, “When will you be ready to start the process of discover purpose?”