Before the new year, I received this email from YouVersion:
What’s Your One Verse for 2014? A new year brings fresh focus and intentionality. As we dream, plan, and set goals, it's a great opportunity to consider where God is leading us. We can find incredible clarity and power in simplicity, so as a community we’re trying something new: choosing one Bible verse as our personal focus for 2014.Find Your Verse 2014. A promise to reflect on. A different way of thinking. A new discipline. Through prayer and reflection, choose one verse that captures what you’re seeking in 2014.Make Your Verse Visible. Display your Verse 2014 where you’ll see it every day: a bathroom mirror, in your car, your laptop’s desktop background—even on your phone’s home screen. Share Your Verse 2014. Tell your family and friends about your verse and why youchose it. Share it from the Bible App, or via email or text. Post it on Twitter,Facebook, and Instagram. And use the hashtag #Verse2014, so others can see it, too.Spend Time in Many Verses. Your Verse 2014 is a focal point for the year, but the vastness of God’s love can’t be boiled down to a single verse. Instead, use it as a springboard to dig deeper into the Bible and your faith as you.
I felt inspired by this idea to choose one verse to engage in for the entire year, that would guide me in accomplishing how I want to grow in Christ during 2014. When I received this email I was in the process of reading One Thousand Gifts, by Ann Voskamp, which describes finding joy in thanksgiving. And that's exactly what I want for this year--joy through thanksgiving. And not because I want to feel happy all the time, but because I want to learn to be thankful to God, no matter what he allows to happen in my life this year, and if that leads to joy...extra bonus! So, here is my 2014 verse of the year:
"Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." --1 Thessalonians 5:18
I look forward to giving thanks for dirty diapers, toddler tantrums, bad hair days, barking dogs--and more seriously--strains in my personal relationships, relocating for the seventh time in five years, raising a one year old, and being a wife to a soldier. Because in the end, it's about trusting God. When I put complete faith in Him, it makes life a whole lot easier, knowing He's in charge and His works are for my good. I may not see it at the time; for example, why I'm left alone to care for our child when my husband heads off to train for weeks, and weeks...and weeks at a time, but God sees, and I accept His plan for us. Maybe that specific training keeps Tim alive in time of war, or maybe I need that alone time to refocus my life on Christ. Whatever the reason, if I trust Him, then I can be thankful for the work He's doing in our lives. Thankful for every last choice He makes. I'm not saying this will be easy, but it will grow me, and in the end that's what I desire, to be more like Christ.
Please join me in identifying one verse to focus on and develop in this new year. I foresee amazing possibilities in this simple, yet profound, endeavor. Needing some inspiration for choosing a verse? YouVersion created this infographic to help. Or, feel free to contact me for ideas.