It took me quite awhile to jump on the word of the year bandwagon. It was 2017 and I was 44 years old when I first chose a word of the year. And now here I am writing about my one word for 2019.
It’s only my second word. No, I didn’t skip a year. I didn’t write about it either.
Blogging has been on the back burner for me for the past couple of years as I concentrated on my family. I wasn’t writing about much of anything.
One thing is for sure, you didn’t miss much. Because I chose the very same word in 2018 as the year before. I’m either a slow learner or a perfectionist. I’m not sure which begs more grace.
In 2017, I desperately wanted to develop self-control. I wanted to be master of my emotions, no longer reacting to people or situations, but instead taking the time to respond purposefully. You can read more about that here.
Quite honestly, I didn’t do so well. By the time the year wrapped up, I felt compelled to choose the very same word for 2018 as well. The slow learner beat myself up. The perfectionist in me wouldn’t give the go ahead to move on until I had accomplished my goal. Or at least saw some drastic improvement.
As 2018 drew to a close, I acknowledged some growth. I was learning to stop, consider and then act calmly and purposely instead of letting my emotions run wild. Many times, I was responding instead of reacting.
More often, however, I found myself still having to apologize for bulldozing my way through a situation yet again. So often, in fact, that I almost chose the same word for a third year running. (Hello. My name is Amanda, and I’m a perfectionist.)
Feeling frustrated with myself, I began to wonder whether the third time would be a charm. I wondered if I would forever be like a city whose walls were broken (Proverbs 25:28).
My One Word for 2019
As I pondered, the Lord began to whisper to my heart. Not in a feathery soft breath like you might imagine, but in a really loud stage whisper meant to get my attention.
As I meditated on various circumstances I had encountered throughout the year, I started to see a pattern.
I was not….
- taking every thought captive (surrendering to truth)
- being anxious for nothing (surrendering to the peace that passes all understanding)
- yielding to the Holy Spirit when prompted (surrendering to obedience)
- letting go of my desire to control everything (surrendering to His goodness and sovereignty)
- spending quality time in the Word (surrendering to the renewing of my mind)
- seeking guidance through prayer (surrendering to the only true source of wisdom)
No wonder I had failed so miserably. Learning to respond rather than react meant making a constant, conscious choice to die to myself. It meant continually choosing to to seek first the Kingdom of God over my own.
It meant all out SURRENDER. Something I had yet to do fully.
And so, surrender became my word for 2019.