Several years ago, instead of making New Year's resolutions that often lead to feelings of failure and defeat later on, I began choosing a word or two to be the focus of the year ahead. When the economy was really down, and consequently so was my builder husband's construction business, I chose Surrender and Trust. A year later, I chose Persevere....things were still tough. The next year, Thanksgiving, after reading Ann Voskamp's book, A Thousand Gifts. The following year, Joy, based on James 1:2..."count it all joy, when you face trials of many kinds...". And last year, Refuge, as we entered the year settled after a move to another home, with immense relief from paying off a business line of credit at the bank. This year, as I was praying prior to New Year's eve, the word that just kept coming to mind, over and over, was Hope. I love the meaning of hope, not wishful thinking, as we so often use the word, but expectant waiting. I'm waiting expectantly on God, full of hope, for His redemptive story to be played out in the lives of several dear ones. A psalm that so speaks to this hope is Psalm 130:5,
"I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in His word I put my hope
My soul waits for the Lord,
More than the watchmen wait for the morning,
More than the watchmen wait for the morning."
Isn't that simply beautiful? I love the repetition of that last phrase. How about you? Do you make New Year's resolutions or goals...or choose a purposeful word or phrase?