Discipline; A New Word for the New Year…

Author, Sonna Evans
Author, Sonna Evans

A little over four years ago I went up to the mountains to visit an old friend. During our visit, she told me about her ‘celebration color’. Each year she would choose a specific color and when she saw something in that color it would fill her with happiness. She surrounded herself with that color as a remembrance of joy.

I love how God gifts us with creativity in different seasons and for different reasons, so I asked God to help me be more focused and maybe even creative; not one of my strengths.

He gave me a word. COURAGE

Wow!  Courage.  That’s a big word. As I contemplated the word courage over and over, God gave me direction. There were all sorts of new things I was encountering that year: saying goodbye to kids who were moving out, living as a newly single person after 20 years, finishing my bachelor’s degree, thinking about a new job. It was a perfect word for that season, and God gave me all the courage I needed.

This led me into a season of GRATITUDE, the next year’s word. Boy was I grateful. I was so full. God had seen me through so many difficult moments, how could I not be grateful? I flew through the year with an attitude of gratitude.

Year three was JOY. This was an exciting word for me. What did God have in store for me this year? As I walked into this new season with anticipation, He truly blew my socks off. After finishing school and a career of 23 years, He moved me into a new job that used my skills and abilities, and where I was able to share freely the reason for the joy I have. My youngest child went away to school which left me home with an empty nest, but my nest wasn’t empty, because my heart was full.

Last year’s word was a little more demure. ABANDON. This word can be taken two ways;

  1. Leave something behind, and
  2. Give up control.

As the year began I thought more about the latter, what did I need to give up control of? I think God had both meanings in mind. I’ve given up control of certain things that I needed to surrender to my King, but I also had to leave something behind. Not as fun as joy, but I believe the harvest of my abandon this year will be bountiful.

This brings me to my word for this year. DISCIPLINE.

As I said, I am not so excited about this one; less one thought. If God has directed me to this word, then He has an amazing plan and I need to be willing to walk through difficult places to see His handiwork.

Is God directing you somewhere as we begin a new year? Take a moment today to be still before Him and listen to His voice as He directs you to how you should be…just living the thing.

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