I’ve read on a few blogs about having a “word of the year”, and several weeks ago when I first pondered having one for 2014, I couldn’t imagine it. How can one word define the goals of an entire year. So succienctly….so boldly. I shrugged it off. Where I started in 2013 and where I ended we such vastly different circumstances, and a million tiny, varied, at times wandering steps led me from January to December. One word couldn’t possibly sum that up!
But then, with the start of the new year, I stumbled upon mention of the “word of the year” again, and almost immediately a word popped into my head, and I knew in my heart that I had found that word. My word of the year. summarizing all of my hopes and goals for the coming 365 days.
2013 ended in a hard place. I went from living my dream, working to teach children how to grow their own food, in rural South Africa. Don’t get me wrong, it was hard. No running water, no car, sketchy internet, and unyielding language and cultural barriers. But it was where the Lord wanted me to be, and where I enjoyed living a very vibrant life. Then, on Halloween, I stumbled. I fell, and in a desperate attempt to avoid falling face-first into the ground, I reached out to grab the parked car next to me. A second later I found myself on the ground, in agony, with a severely broken arm.
I never imagined I would injure myself through my work with the Peace Corps in South Africa, let alone badly enough to have surgery and spend a few days in the hospital. It was a very difficult time. A few weeks later I found myself on a plane home, the life I had in South Africa rapidly falling farther away as I flew towards an uncertain life in the USA.
I was blessed, immensely blessed, to spend Christmas at home with my family for the first time in three years. It was a joyous time, and I’ll treasure that first holiday back home.
But mentally, emotionally, spiritually…I felt battered. Confused. Uncertain of everything and fearful of the future. Doubting myself and His plans for me. The end of the year left me grasping at straws, trying to find a normal life here while still mourning the loss of my life in South Africa. Missing my friends, feeling as if I let down my coworkers and the children I taught. Helpless to do anything about it. Weak.
This year I will be stronger.
My body will recover from unfortunate accident and be stronger.
My faith will be stronger.
My confidence will be stronger.
I won’t waver: I will be stronger.
Will you join me in having a Word of the Year, if you haven’t already? Let’s write about how focusing on and praying over one word affects our year.
What is your Word of the Year? Feel free to share!