What’s Your Word?
Whether you chose a word every year or this is your first time, there are many benefits to gain by doing this. First, this past year was a bit depressing and we are all looking forward to a new year. But we can move past those troubles and focus on 2021 with earnest and a positive mindset. Choosing a word is not a resolution (like going on a diet, joining a gym, getting healthy) but rather a word that encompasses what you want to focus on for change for the better throughout the year. It is choosing a word to lead your way through 2021. Change one thing and change everything – that is what you want to keep in mind while selecting a word.
We have all been there starting out strong then forgetting our resolution. That is why, instead of setting ourselves up for failure, it’s so much more helpful to use a guiding word and a Bible verse of the year for inspiration. Many people have ditched their resolutions in favor of a single word. It is a simple process that takes a little introspection, a bit of prayer, and a pen and paper.
But what if you cannot find a word that fits or is too superficial, practical, or simply not inspirational enough for you? More than likely, it may be because you are selecting a word without starting in The Word. So before you decide, start by praying and spend some time in God’s Word. Find out what God taught you in 2020 and what His plans are for you in 2021. Prayerfully ask Him to reveal a word and verse where He wants you to focus.
A specific word’s power impacts many areas in your life to help you grow in the upcoming year. It may take you time, so be patient; there is a word God will place on your heart, and when He reveals it, and you live it, you will find it is enriching and exciting.
The concept of a word and Bible scripture helps you mature and grow in your life and your walk with God, and when you find your word, it helps be a reminder to make better choices in life. You will be happier, and if you apply it to your daily life, it can influence positive change
So how can a word and Bible verse sustain you to keep your focus intentional? Think about what challenges you faced, and what you learned, what mistakes did you make, and also what you accomplished. Reflect on the past and where you want to change, and then develop actions to keep you accountable. Your word and Bible verse should encompass what is yet to come. Once you have your word, pray about a Bible verse that supports it, and you will soon see that your God is working in your life.
My 2021 word for the year- is faithfulness. I chose this word by reflecting on my year (2020) what I learned, and how I could use that in order to continue to grow in my relationship with God, who I trust to provide me with the wisdom to remain faithful in 2021. I felt 2020 was a growing year for me, and in 2021 God whispers that I still have to work to be faithful in all the wisdom and learnings from 2020.
I also chose the following scripture that supports my word (faithfulness), which is Galatians 5:22-23 ” But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”
I matured in my walk with God this past year, learning to surrender to His will and not mine fully. I want to continue growing and developing to be more like Him and be faithful in the fruits of the Spirit.
Once you have your word and Bible verse, break it down with what you want to accomplish, you can include tangible and actionable things that will help you grow. For example, I took my word and my verse with what I want to accomplish and broke it into the following categories. If you need help, look it up in the dictionary.
- Love – Be more forgiving, be available to listen when someone needs a caring heart. Encourage and be compassionate to others. Do something each day to make someone feel special and use the gifts God gave me to help others heal.
- Joy & Peace– Be “in the moment,” letting go of distractions that prevent me from enjoying my surroundings and each moment of my life. Make God my priority in prayer and devotions, and actions. Do not lose sight when things are good that I still need Him and will pursue Him every minute, hour, day. ). Praise God for His faithfulness no matter what the circumstance is and surrender to His will.
- Kindness, Gentleness & Goodness – Let others see my faith in what I say and my actions. Be a faithful friend and give to others without expecting anything in return.
- Forbearance & Self-control – Surrender to His will and not mine, letting Him be in control and be patient in the waiting, knowing His plan is best. Do all things as if I am doing it for the Lord and continue to lean on Him and put on His armor when Satan tries to tempt me. Budget my money so I do not spend frivolously. Ask God for help in removing other sins from my life.
Now that I have shared how to select and outline your word and verse, here are some helpful tips for keeping them active throughout the year. Outline your plan and be realistic. The key is to have you: see it, review it, think about it, feel it and own it so that it sticks and becomes a guiding theme in your life.
- Memorize your Bible verse and associated word – put them in your journal, diary, or your wallet.
- Define Your Focus Word – Write your word with a clear definition. Start with the dictionary definition, then dig deeper into what it means to you and why it is essential.
- Include it in your planner, journal, calendar or on your mirror – place it where you can see it.
- Create an alarm on your phone scheduling time each day to review your word and Bible verse, include some devotion and prayer time.
- Create a Vision Board. This is a great visual and is a fun and creative display providing a constant source of motivation. But remember to use it; it is only as good as making it alive in your daily life.
- Develop a reading list – it can be books, blogs, and even online forums that compliment your word. Look your word up in the Bible and read the corresponding scripture.
- Wear Your Word with custom jewelry or on a mug or shirt etc. Having a tangible reminder is helpful. I purchased a charm with my word on it and will add it to my keychain as a reminder.
- Make your computer inspiring. Add your word as a screen saver, or add it as the background on your phone. These are great ways to see your word daily.
- Other areas – Place it in a picture frame, or make it on your mouse-pad. Write your word on your mirror, place it in your car, or if you use a treadmill, put it there. You can put it just about anywhere.
There you have it—a few ideas on how to get your word of the year to stick. Try any or all the ideas, and I’m sure it will no longer be a forgotten word or theme to you! If you have any ideas for making your word ‘stick,’ I would love to hear them!