Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Grace: My Word From The Word for 2017

Good morning, cafe friends!

I'm getting over a nasty Christmas/New Year's cold. Tis the season for sharing...germs. Yuck! I think I may have had the flu, but the lingering cough is really annoying. This too shall pass.

Today I thought I'd share with you my word for 2017, and how I go about looking for a word that God puts on my heart.

I've probably been choosing a yearly "word" to meditate on for close to ten years now. Our church at the time (St. Louis 'burbs) would pick a bible verse that would be the theme they would touch on repeatedly that year. In 2007, the theme was "25550: Make It Count". It was taken from Psalm 90, where Moses recounts the number of an average man's days (thus the 25550 number) and asks God "Teach us to number our days." This had such a huge impact on our family, and I've continued the practice ever since.

Without fail, God provides a word for me and places it on my heart. It seems to be a word that pops up frequently, just for scripture, on the radio, in song. And it usually coincides with a new year, too.

I've learned some great lessons along the way. Words like "Redeemed", "Fear Not", "Great Things", "Rooted".

This year, the word that came to me again and again was Grace.

And God showed me a verse that seemed to encapsulate everything that has been in my head and heart for 2017.

2 Corinthians 9:8:

"And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work."

And here's the cool thing I discovered! This verse and last year's verse (Colossians 2:6-7) both have the word "abound".

So I looked up the Greek translation of the word. Perisseuo, which means to exceed, go beyond, surplus, abundance, lavish.

Lavish. Isn't that a lovely word? And it is truly how I feel. God has loved me lavishly, He has provided for me lavishly, He has bestowed His Grace upon me lavishly. And because of His lavish grace, I have everything I need. But more importantly, God has given me this grace so that I can lavish it upon others. Grace upon Grace. Undeserved.

This year is a big one for me. Next month, I will celebrate a birthday that starts with a 5 and ends with an "OH!" The more I thought about how I want to celebrate this milestone, the more I've felt that it is not about me. In fact, I want the opposite...less of me, more of others.

I found this recently, and it so eloquently sums it up on a personal, practical level.

Grace abounding! What a lovely thought for 2017.

Have you chosen a word for the new year?

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