This is my word for 2014; Perseverance.
According to webster.com it means, “the quality that allows someone to continue trying to do something even though it is difficult; continued effort despite difficulties, failure or opposition.”
Yes, that is the word that I want to embody this year. Perseverance.
I selected a word after being inspired by a host of friends who were choosing words for their years. My dear friends, thank you for your inspiration. Normally, I have a significantly hard time narrowing it down to just one word. What can I say, I am a wordy person by nature. 🙂
My preference towards this specific word grew out of my frustration more than anything else. I became so irritated at the noise about NEW this New Years. It was all over the place – advertisements, writings, notes, announcements…new, new, new, new and more new. Set new goals. New resolutions. Be a new you.
Now it is not that I am curmudgeon against all new things and opposed to all change. New can be joyful and exhilarating. Change can be very exciting. Perhaps it was just exhaustion from the holidays, mixed with that yucky bloated feeling of over eating holiday goodies. Maybe it was because about half of my goals for last year were only half completed. It could be that I was just hormonal. The only thing I know for sure is that the word NEW was ANNOYING.
I fully recognized that I needed some heavy duty prayer time over my attitude, the results of my goals for 2013 and potential 2014 goals.
It just so happened that on December 31st I came upon this verse, “Keep traveling along His pathway and in due season He will honor you with every blessing” (Psalm 37:34 The Living Bible).
Thank you so very much Viriginia for the amazing daily calendar!
What an answer to my prayers. Keep going. Press on. Persevere.
The results of my 2013 goals: Some were completed, yeah! Some were started, hooray! Some are still a vision, ok! I take full responsibility and announce that some of the lack of completion was due to poor planning, discouragement, distractabilty and inconsistency on my part. There was a couple of areas where unforeseen events and circumstances (both positive and negative) occurred that were not a part my “plan” at the beginning of 2013.
I am not a hopeless cause because I did not accomplish my goals. I do not need a whole NEW me either. What I need is to keep going. I need to press on. I need to not give up.
When I wrote my goals for 2014 I kept ALL of the 2013 goals that I have not yet accomplished. I am not cutting myself any slack here. I am going to persevere. For all I know, I still may not succeed in 2014, but I am going to continue trying despite difficulty, failure and opposition. I will keep on hoping, that in due season, I will recognize the blessing in it all.
If you are like me, you are probably smiling and thinking to yourself, “YES! Perseverance sounds great!” It sure does, doesn’t it. So what does this look like in reality? How am I going to do it?
How Julie will Persevere in 2014
Prayer is my most important form of communication, in the most important relationship that I have. It is God and me. It is time for me to talk, but also for me to listen. Sometimes it is just about being together. It is a source of strength and source of hope. It is the opportunity for me to have my vision and my sight adjusted, that I may see with new eyes. When I pray I receive new perspective. It is like what happens when I take my glasses off. I see life in a whole new way (I am extremely near sighted with astigmatism).
I need accountability. I need a cheerleader to help me press on. I need someone to kick my butt every once in a while. I need wisdom gained from experience from those who have gone before me. Some of this is just not going to happen on my own. It is going to be humbling and I am going to need to have gumption to show my trusted inner circle those messiest parts of my life, the ones that are weighing me down and making the travel on my path more difficult.
Rome was not built in a day; neither will the path to my accomplished goals. I am going to have to take small steps with consistency and determination. I am going to have to trudge ahead when I just want to sit down. I am going to have to reach my hands into the dirt and pull weeds out by the roots. It is the last one that gets me the most. Yuck, how dirt on my skin makes me cringe. Whatever happens I have to keep going.
I would love to say that all of my goals will be accomplished by making small steps and incremental adjustments along the way. But the truth is that some of them are going to take some big leaps. Leaps of faith and leaps out of my comfort zone. I read many, many books and I am acutely aware that revolutionary change sometimes takes off the wall, out of the box modifications. To do big things sometimes it seems like we have got to do big things.
I tried to set my goals to be very measurable and specific. This way I can see how I am doing. I can determine if course corrections are needed. It is like having mile markers on my pathway so I can see (and celebrate) how far I have come as well as to judge how far I have to go.
Did I mention prayer? I need to be in prayer. I need to ask others to pray with me and for me. I want to be covered, doused and drenched in prayer if I am going to increase my perseverance in 2014.
How about You?
Do you have a word for 2014?
What is it?
If you would like to share it with me, I would be honored. I would love to commit to praying for you and for your 2014.
Allow me to offer up this prayer for all of us:
Dearest and Beloved Lord,
God, sometimes a year seems like forever and sometimes it seems as fleeting as a blink of an eye. It is as hard to grasp onto as the breath that flows through our lungs. Lord, help us to not be so overwhelmed by the year or the things we would like to see happen in that span of time. Instead, help us to capture moments.
May each moment that we grab and take hold of be a stepping stone on the pathway to perseverance. May we recognize that some steps are going to be harder than others. Some will be taken in laughter as we easily bounce along and others are going to be painful as we trudge tediously on. There will be others still that will seem mediocre and monotonous. Lord, help us to just keep going. Whether it is in small steps, giant leaps or some combination of both, help us to keep traveling.
May we be focused on You and the relationship that we have with You. There are so many blessings to come from You, God. Being with You. Following You. Getting to Know You better. Allowing You to know us fully. The joy of Your friendship. The strength and the power of Your hands.
If we persevere in one thing this year, may it be in our relationships with You.
In the Holy name of Jesus I pray, amen.