We started last year with a hush. It was a quietness of spirit hovering slowly over a blanket of grief. And yet there was this burst of light sprinkled inside the fog, because for those who believe, death is victory.
And so it is that we enter into this new year with another victorious hush. We celebrate and we mourn as we head into the one year anniversary of Herb’s death. We celebrate that he’s had a full year to sit at the throne, though I imagine for him it’s been but a moment in time.
Entering into last year, I didn’t set any resolutions. I had no word to dictate my days. Or…well, actually maybe I did, but I didn’t know it at the time. In hindsight, if I were to pick a word for last year, it would be survive.
We survived the death of a parent, increased travel for Lee, a baby who didn’t want to sleep through the night, busy sports schedules, and my parents living in Europe. It was hard, but it was also overflowing with blessing.
There was a lot of good in 2015, and for that I rejoice.
Heading into 2016, I’m a little more focused. My mind isn’t quite so numb, and the fuzziness of the past year has lifted considerably. So I’m focusing again on a new word for the year.
I don’t want to survive this year. I don’t want to get lost in the haze of life again.
This year, I want to pursue.
The idea of a resolution is intimidating. A resolution demands some sort of success. It begs for, well, for resolution. An end. A satisfactory result.
It also sets one up for failure. Anything short of resolved feels undone, and I do hate for anything to be undone.
Pursuit, however, feels more open-ended. To pursue something means to chase after it. Perhaps you catch that which you pursue, and perhaps you don’t, but if the goal is to simply pursue, then whether or not you catch it isn’t really the point.
The goal is in the chase, and so I’ve set PURSUE my word for 2016.
There is no satisfaction in stagnancy, and I refuse to allow it creep into my life. There’s this sort of mentality that creeps up on you when you all approach forty – a feeling that perhaps the best years are already behind you.
I refuse to entertain such thoughts.
This year, I’m pursuing that which is ahead of me. And so I’ve written down bullet points of the things I want to pursue:
- A deeper intimacy with the Creator: What is life if we don’t constantly long to know Him more?
- The hearts of my children: I often get so caught up in the day to day moments of our days that I forget to pursue my kids – to really know who they are deep down, beyond their outward gifts and abilities; beyond their personality quirks and challenges. This year I want to pursue their hearts.
- The heart of my husband: We will celebrate sixteen years of marriage this summer, and I’m still learning more about this man I love. I want to pursue a greater depth of knowing who he is in the coming year.
- A better use of my down time: This year I plan to read more (I’m open to book suggestions – preferably fiction!), and to spend more of my time pursuing those things that expand my mind, rather than simply shut it down (I’m talking to you, Facebook).
- Excellence in the use of my talents and gifts: I hope to write another book this year. I will be launching two books in the summer and fall. I want to continue to pursue excellence in my career.
- Health: I’ve simply let it slide in the last year. I refuse to let my laziness make me old. This year I’ll pursue more healthy living.
- Friendships: I’ve been richly blessed with dear friends both near and far. I want to continue to cultivate and grow those friendships.
- Laughter: I just want to laugh more heartily and readily at the days to come.
These are the things I’ll pursue, and in the pursuit I’ll offer myself loads of grace. I don’t have specific goals inside these pursuits as I want to simply enjoying the chase.
2016 is here. The future is upon us! This is our time to pursue all the beauty that life has to offer. Won’t you join me in the chase?
Have you chosen a word for the year? Feel free to share it in the comments!
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We have so very much in common! Jan 1, 2015 saw my husband return from being home following the death of his father. We (not our parents) lived in Europe. We will celebrate 16 years of marriage this summer. And I, too, hope to write (or mostly write) my first book. I’d love to sit and have a coffee with you!!
As for books…my most favorite ever is a historical fiction trilogy by Liz Curtis Higgs. Thorn in My Hear, Fair is the Rose and Whence Came a Prince. I’ve read the whole series at least 5 times. It’s amazing.
I would LOVE to sit and have coffee with you! Preferably somewhere in Europe. 😉
Those are great recommendations. I have actually never read anything by Liz Curtis Higgs, so I will definitely check those out.
Thanks, and Happy New Year!
Pursue….a great word! I have landed on “steadfast”. I want to be steadfast and immovable…. 1 Corinthians 15:58!
Books? Charles Martin is my all time favorite author. (Don’t read Unwritten. In my opinion it was not his best work! 🙂 BUT, The Mountain Between Us. ….. Water from My Heart….. When Crickets Cry! LOVE THEM!
I love the word steadfast, Karen. That’s a great thing to pursue!
I read my first Charles Martin book this fall and liked it a lot! (I read Water From My Heart). I need to check the other ones out. He’s a great writer!