I love the start of each new year. It feels so fresh. A blank slate. New goals, refreshed ambitions, a healthy, focused mindset.
As one year dwindles and the next approaches, I’ve developed a practice where I strive to focus myself and pray for God to give me a word for the following year. A word to meditate on and keep coming back to. A word that draws me to Him and pushes me forward. Some years, His voice is very clear and a word just sits on my heart until it becomes very transparent. Other years, it has taken me weeks upon weeks, begging God for even the faintest whisper of a syllable. I’ve even worked to create the perfect environment to focus myself (you know, candles, coffee, dim lighting, praise music), yet sometimes, He feels silent.
This year, my word trickled in slowly at first and very quickly became crystal clear: Freedom. But, I am using the Swahili version, which is Uhuru. In May, I am taking on a huge personal challenge, and am climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro with Team World Vision. I am so excited and terrified all in the same. Yet, I’m confident in one thing – I’m going to leave behind all fear and worry, relying on Jesus to complete my every need.
I can already envision myself striding (slowly, but ever-focused) towards the top of that mountain. Uhuru is a constant reminder that I’m continually striving for a life of complete and total freedom, which regardless of how hard I might try, I can’t provide for myself. It can only come from the sweet uhuru and total security of knowing Jesus.
What’s your word for the year? I’d love to be praying for you.