ONE WORD for 2014

by - 6:22 PM

Many of my friends have been writing about their "one word" for the new year. I have hesitated to do likewise because I really wanted to think this one through. I also have a steady stream of perfectionism running through my veins, so I wanted to wait a bit beyond January 1st in order to shock my system out of it's bent toward obsessively on-time compliance.

If you are not familiar with the "one word" concept, there are two fairly prominent Christian websites charging their readers to pick one word of inspiration for the new year. [FYI: those websites are located here and here.] The idea is that you encapsulate any new year's resolutions or goals for the year into one word that either motivates you for what lies ahead or describes what you envision the year to hold.

Since I have some long-term goals with short-term steps for meeting them (see my post about S.M.A.R.T. goals), I wanted to make sure my "one word" really grasped the vision I have in mind.

My one word: FINALLY.

My reasoning:
Every goal I want to accomplish (or at least get a good start on) in 2014 is something that I have half-heartedly attempted in years past. However, finally, I will make progress on these things. How will I succeed? Planning, being "S.M.A.R.T." with those plans, and employing as much accountability as possible.
  • FinallyI will have a more committed and consistent daily time with Jesus. Over the years, this has been "hit-or-miss" (and more often "miss" than "hit")...and that is not okay. To meet this goal, I am employing differing levels of accountability along with organization.
  • Finally, I will have a weekly schedule that I control (as much as possible) rather than it controlling me. Much of this has to do with the crisis-centered nature of my job, which often errs on the side of erraticism (imagine that!). However, I am planning out my weeks much more in-advance and staying on top of my case notes and other paperwork so that they no longer run my life. [Can I get an "amen!" from any other social workers out there?]
  • Finally, I will be healthier and more fit. While many people set the same goal to "lose weight" with each new year, I am seeking to view this year with realistic eyes. Of course I want to lose weight. Of course I want to be slimmer and more athletic. Of course, of course, of course. But this year, I am choosing to focus on implementing specific weekly exercise standards with targeted goals. And I am choosing to view the way I eat differently - with a more holistic and wise approach rather than anything involving the words "crash" or "diet" (not that I've ever really been a fan of those anyway!). 
  • Finally, I will be "starting to finish" [chuckle] my degree program. I use the phrase "starting to finish" because I will not be totally done by the end of 2014. I have 2/3 of my Masters of Divinity completed at SBTS, and I am finished with only half of the classes specifically preparing me for biblical counseling certification through the ACBC. Let's get real, here. It's time I kicked it into high gear and knocked those things out, already! I mean, I started seminary in 2005. Sheesh!
  • Finally, I will be putting myself out there for real when it comes to pursuing ministry. First and foremost, I am trying to embody the Jim Elliott quote, "Wherever you are, be all there. Live to the hilt every situation you believe to be the will of God." that end, I am hotly pursuing intentionality in witnessing to the lost, discipling younger believers, and meeting for accountability with close friends and mentor-types. Also, I have committed to more frequent blogging and seeking out writing and speaking opportunities.

Whew! It feels good to get all of that down on screen. So what about you? What is your "one word" for 2014?


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  1. I share your #1 and #3 :) here is a post about my one word

  2. My one word is excellence. It's great you will finally finish some of your goals or nearly finish :)

  3. April, that is a great way to state it: "careless in the care of God." And it's the name of your site - that's awesome!
    Latonya, "excellence" is a wonderful word! Thanks for sharing!

  4. Leah, "careless in the care of God' is from the message version of the verse Matthew struck a cord with me :)

  5. I read your post — and I've seen many others — about ONE WORD. I've never done it. Frankly, I don't have the willpower. I don't do resolutions, or diets, or even have much discipline for things like daily quiet time. I'd just come to terms with the fact that that's how I am, and that it was OK. And yet? Every one of these posts has set off a spark. And to make it worse? I already know my word. God spoke it to me, as part of a phrase I felt He wanted me to pray, on Christmas Eve. "I turn away — from turning away." In other words, stop resisting. Give in. Go straight to God. Stop finding excuses. Run towards, not away, from who He created me to be. Turn to the relationship He wants to have with me. My word is TURN. The manuscript I just submitted to my publisher is called The Art of Praying Upside Down. In other words, how to turn your prayers around. Yep, turn. I wrote it, and now it's time to live it. The book comes out in 2015, so I guess I've got some time. I'm feeling somewhat reluctant — and yet hopeful. I can't do this on my own. But if it's what HE wants... well, then, no more turning away.

  6. My word is "Now". I've been putting off some things, and the now is the time.

  7. I'm taking part in the OneWord phenomenon for the first time this year. My word for 2014 is "desire" and I wrote a post about it over at my blog if you're interested: Glad to have stumbled across your blog - I'm adding it to my reader as it sounds like we might have a few things in common.

  8. Kelly, we can all get caught in the "that's how I am" trap. Praise to God for speaking to you about turning. Turning and repenting is the one way we can get out of trying to do things in our own strength and then failing. Thank you for sharing. I too want to be running toward who He created me to be. God bless you in your endeavors!

    Stan, "now" is definitely the time. Thanks for posting!

    Michelle, I read your post and commented. I love your word: desire. And thanks for adding me...It'd be great to stay in touch in the future to see if we can encourage one another in those areas we share in common.

  9. Thanks so much for sharing on my blog! So, we'll be doing this "finally" thing together! I love all of your goals for the year! It's going to be a great year!

  10. Thanks for coming over to read, Amber! This IS going to be a great year!

  11. Hi Leah! I enjoyed reading your one word post. I hope you do finally see all these happen! My word is "abide." I've been writing a weekly reflection on it on my blog:

  12. Thanks for stopping by, Gina! Abide is an AWESOME word for the year, btw! I went over and checked out your site...and I gotta' say, after coming out of "content" in 2013...about the only place you can go is "abide." Inspiring!


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