Instead of our regular service challenge this week, I encourage you to take a look into your heart with me today. Let’s decide what’s most important to us. And then together, let’s change the world in 2015.
So … New Year’s Resolutions.
They don’t work so well for me.
I really love the whole concept. A fresh new year, a new beginning, new goals … I love the idea.
But I never, ever stick to them.
If you are a big fan of resolutions, good for you! Keep on sticking to your goals – I’m proud of you!
But if you’re like me …
A few years ago I began hearing about the concept of having a New Year’s Word. Not goals, not resolutions … just a single word. One that best summarizes what you’d like to focus on throughout the year. One of my favorite examples was this article, written two years ago by a blogger who I greatly admire.
So last year, I decided to try it. To paint the scene a bit, at the end of 2013, I wasn’t doing very well. My health had been on a steady decline for several years. I was in constant, often debilitating, pain. My husband and I spent two days in San Francisco at the end of December, and although we spent almost the entire trip relaxing, we did walk up one steep hill to get to a museum. That one hill had me limping for several days afterwards.
There was only one option to help the pain. A surgery. One that shattered my heart. One that meant what I’d been fighting for two years.
It meant no more babies.
But finally my husband and I came to a decision that took every bit of strength and courage that I had in me. As December 2013 closed, I called my doctor and told them that I needed to schedule the surgery.
Then I collapsed in bed and wept. And wept. And wept.
A few days later, I was pondering the idea of the “New Year’s Word” concept. I thought of the year behind me and I wondered about the year ahead of me. And very clearly, one word came to my mind.
It’s what I knew I would need. And oh, how I desperately needed it!
I have leaned on not just my faith, but my hope, this year. It has been a difficult year, as I knew it would be. But I thought about the idea of hope. I read scriptures and talks and articles about it. I prayed for it. I depended on it to get me through from one day to the next. I had hope that life would get better. I had hope that I would get stronger. I had hope that somehow, my broken body would allow me to take care of my family, to enjoy life, and to make a difference in the world, even if it is ever so small.
And as I ponder back on this year, I am so, so grateful for my faith … and for my hope. Because life is still hard. My body is still in pain. But it’s better. Day by day, I struggle. But I look at where I was a year ago and where I am now … and I see progress.
I see hope.
So with 2015 beginning tomorrow, I have given much thought to my new word. I look at my struggles and my triumphs and my regrets from last year, and I think about what I want to be different about this year.
I want to look past the trials and pain of life, and I want to enjoy it. I want to cherish these fleeting years of being a young mother, and I want to delight in my littleness of my children. I don’t just want to survive 2015.
I want to savor it.
And there it is – a word I don’t often use, but one that summarizes how I want to spend 2015.
I want to look at my life and feel like I’m the luckiest woman in the world. I want to count my blessings and rejoice that my broken body has given me the gift of two wonderful, perfect, healthy children. I want to cherish the bedtime stories, the “one-more-song-PLEASE”es, the way their little bodies fit into my lap and their sweet voices go straight to my heart.
I want to savor this year.
What about you? What is your word of 2015?