‘Tis the season of giving. It’s a time when we make lists, attend events, and participate in family gatherings. We save, plan, wrap, give, receive, accept, and return. Then we end one year and begin another.
But, this question gives me pause and right now I need to consider my answer. Maybe it is the same answer for others, so I’ll pose mine here.
About a year ago, my sister asked me to join her in focusing on one word for a year. The premise comes from One Word that Will Change Your Life by Jon Gordon, Dan Britton, and Jimmy Page. The idea is to go through a series of steps to determine from a spiritual perspective what specific word a person needs to focus on for the coming year. Sometimes this word is obvious. Sometimes it isn’t. It’s important–at least the first time–to read through this short book and follow process.
I say it’s important the first time because my One Word for 2020 did not become clear for me through reading this book again. It happened as a result of seeing it more than once through focusing on my One Word for 2019. The book by Gordon, Britton, and Page is not the one that should fully define a next One Word.
I believe God leads us to understand what we need to want in the coming days.
I say this because, unbeknownst to me, I have already been guided to focusing on One Word for several years now. Some of the words God has taught me to understand in a new way based on His Word are
- Abide: John 15:4
- Trust: Psalm 46:10 (Proverbs 3:5-6)
- Courage: Joshua 1:9
- Rejoice: Philippians 4:4
- Peace: Philippians 4:6-7
- Focus: Philippians 4:8
- Content: Philippians 4:11
Some of these words are specific to a season of my life. Some are recurring. Proverbs 3:5-6 is my life verse because it continues to be one God brings to mind whenever I face a major decision or turning point. Philippians 4:6-7 is one that this individual dealing with Generalized Anxiety Disorder turns to on a regular basis! But, the others are also connected and have been revealed to me at key, pivotal moments. As in the case with my journey through the Philippians verses, He keeps me coming back to a specific, concentrated study of certain passages that lead to others of further enlightenment.
I can share these words now because I’ve seen the fruit of them in my life. But, when delving into a new word journey, I take a cue from the Gordon-Britton-Page book. I choose a few people I trust and share with them my One Word for the coming year. I’m not going to reveal my 2020 word here. Not yet.
I will share this. Although revealed through a different word or scripture, what I need to want in the coming year is pretty much the same as what I’ve needed to want every year. It’s what I need to want every day. I need to want more of God. That includes adjusting my lists to match His will. It means that every event I attend has some purpose related to what God has called me to do. It refocuses the family gatherings in light of His ultimate family gathering. It begs the question “How can what I save, plan, wrap, give, receive, accept, and return in order to glorify God?”
Maybe my 2020 One Word is less of a mystery after asking that question. But, I have another reason for not sharing my One Word right now. What God’s word is for me may not be His word for everyone else. It’s critical for each of us to learn what God needs us to want from Him in 2020.
Ask Him. Seek Him. Know Him.
Maybe the best gift you will receive this Christmas is a special One Word from Him.