Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year - New Word

In 2007 I read a book titled “Thursdays at Eight” by Debbie Macomber. It’s about a group of friends who would meet every Thursday morning for breakfast or coffee. In this story an idea for my own life sprung off of the pages. Each woman would pick a word at the beginning of the year that they would use as the theme for that year. I liked that idea and have been doing this ever since reading the book. Each year the word that I have chosen has brought a new meaning and depth to my life.

 For 2012 my word was “Awaken”. Here is what I wrote in my journal about choosing this word, “I picked this word because I no longer want to sleep walk or sleep live my days while here on this earth. God has given me this life and a purpose to these days and I don’t want to miss any of what he has for me. So many times I take for granted all of the wonderful, joy-filled blessings that I have been given because I am too busy numbing my mind and spirit with useless things…I need to be awake to all that God has given to me and to remember that God provides all of what I need.”

Little did I know on January 1, 2012 when I chose the word Awaken, how my life and the life of my family would be awakened to so much and how God would provide all of what we would need to live through it.

2012 brought with it joy, pain, loneliness, exhaustion, laughter, thanksgiving and blessings. Through all of the ups and downs, twists and turns we found God beside us, ahead of us, holding us, directing us and simply being with us.

I began a new job as Director of Women’s Ministry, our oldest daughter went back to college, our first grandson was born but with complications that would keep him in the hospital the first 5 months of his little, on Christmas Day God would give us the special gift of bringing Jackson home from the hospital so that he and his mommy and daddy could begin their life as a family under one roof, our son would move 500 miles away to start a new life in a new place, become engaged to a beautiful sweet young woman, and my husband and I would become empty nesters and would begin a new chapter of our lives getting to know one another again.

Within all of what happened there are details that I won’t share but please know that there were many challenges, struggles, anxiety, anticipation and waiting, lots of waiting.

So on this the first day of the new year, I look back on 2012 with relief in knowing that we made it through stronger and with a deeper connection with one another and with God and I look forward to what lies ahead for me in 2013.

As I close the chapter of my life titled “Awaken”, I begin a new chapter with a new word. I took a long time thinking about which word I would choose for this year. Many words traveled through my thoughts but one word stood out among the others. My word for 2013 is “Simplicity”. The word simplicity brings calmness to my spirit that I deeply need.

I realized after a year filled with new responsibilities, traveling back and forth to see my grandson for 5 months, the everyday drama and challenges that my own choices and decisions brought to my life and those that other people brought to my life, I am ready for a little more simple and a lot less hectic.

So this year I am searching, beckoning, needing and embracing a more simple way of life. This year I will be sharing with you all that I discover and learn as I search for simplicity. And with every new word I will bring God along for the ride. Turning to him to reveal to me the simple pleasures, blessings, changes and growth opportunities that may bring to me simplicity.

So as we begin 2013, I wish each of you a year filled with God’s blessings. May you have more love, joy, laughter, courage, growth and simplicity.




  1. God bless you Jill~ We could all use some simplicity!

    1. Thank you Tracy and I agree!! Happy New Year:)

  2. Wonderful Jill! Thank you for sharing this idea. The first word that popped into my head for myself was Gratitude. I need to acknowledge all the wonderful things in my life that I am grateful for, from the love of God, to my family to the snow, which I hate but will agree is beautiful. :) Blessings to you and your family.

    1. Thanks Cathy:) Gratitude is something we all need to express and share. There is a great book that I read a year ago that you may be interested in reading. "One Thousand Gifts-A dare to live fully right where you are" by Ann Voskamp. It is all about God's grace and looking for God's blessings everyday. So happy you found your word for 2013!! Blessings to you and your family too.