|Button courtesy of Melanie at Only A Breath|
Welcome 2013! It's the second day of the new year and, for many, resolutions have been made and broken. Not me. I've long since given up on making and breaking resolutions at the beginning of each new year. The list was always the same - lose weight, work out more, read my Bible more, pray more - and, though my intentions were good, the results never changed. Ultimately, every resolution I ever made was broken.
A few years ago I was introduced to the One Word challenge. The idea is simple: One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live. One word that you can focus on every day, all year long.
Though I liked the thought of focusing on one word throughout the year, I never stepped up to the challenge. Picking one word seemed too difficult, too risky. How do you pick just one word? What if I picked the wrong one? What if the word actually took shape in my life and changed me?
Despite all the fears and doubts chasing each other in my head, this year I'm accepting the challenge. For several days I thought about different words - expect, believe, trust, justice - and even looked a few of them up in the dictionary for greater clarity. I prayed, asking God to shed some light on which of these words He would have me focus on this year.
Surprisingly, God chose a different word for me: return.
"Return" seems like an odd word. At first glance, it doesn't necessarily sum up who I want to be or how I want to live. Nor does it seem like a word to focus on day-in and day-out.
What does return even mean? Return to what?
"Return" means to come or go back to, and it has undertones of restoration and redemption. At second glance, it's a perfect word for me. While I have little idea how this word is going to play a part in my life this coming year, I'm sure of two things:
God wants me to return to my first love - Him.
God wants to return to me what the enemy has try to steal, kill, and destroy.
There is little doubt that God has spoken this word - return - to me. My heart longs for those quiet, intimate moments with Him that are more often than not hurried and short. My spirit thirsts for His words, alive and breathing life into me. My soul longs for vindication from the Lord, for the return of peace, joy, and health to me and my family. For all the things that have been taken to be restored.
"Come, let us return to the Lord. He will heal us, He will bandage our wounds."
Did you make any New Year's resolutions or did you choose one word to focus on through the year?