Monday, February 18, 2013

Theme for 2013: Rejoice

Oops. This post got stuck in draft mode for quite a while. This was written several weeks ago.

Several years ago I read an article online about having a one word theme for the year. You can read the entire thing here. My paraphrased version is this: Pray and ask God to show you what one word/concept he wants you to focus on for the year. Once you know what it is, you focus on growing in that area all year long. You can do a word study in the Bible, look for ways to worship/serve/grow closer to God through that word, and let it affect you relationally, emotionally, at work, at home, in all areas of your life.

For example, in 2009 my theme was humility. Not my choice, but I learned a lot about being humble and having humility before God and man. Incidentally that year I learned that I have a lot of pride. The next year I focused on wisdom and seeking God's wisdom for all areas of my life. For 2011, my theme was patience. A very good theme to have the year I planned my wedding and was away from Arold for 5 months! Last year, 2012, was focused on God's faithfulness. (So much freaking out about finances, support, having a baby, my house in Mishawaka, etc. etc. etc., but so many opportunities to see God's faithfulness to us!).

After some prayer and some frustrations about life, I realized my theme for this year is rejoice. As in...

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again, REJOICE! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. --Philippians 4:4-7

and my all time favorite verse...

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. --Romans 15:13

Now that I know I will be rejoicing in the Lord this year, I see things all around me that pointed to this theme. We often sing "This is the day" to Isaac. Nearly every day one of us sings the line, "I will rejoice and be glad in it." It's a good lesson for all of us. And my friend Alison gave me this awesome magnet for Christmas that simply says "JOY". How's that for a reminder to rejoice in the Lord every time I'm in the kitchen. And the calendar my grandma gave me had "live joyously" as the text for January.

2013: the year of rejoicing

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