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January 4, 2024

Word for the Year

Did you make a New Year’s resolution?  According to a recent survey, 37% of Americans do.

Did you make a promise to yourself to lose weight, get in shape, drink less, read the Bible more, pray more, or give more?

If you did, fantastic!  More power to you.  I hope your discipline will keep moving you forward when your motivation wanes in another week or two.

Over the years, I’ve made resolutions and set goals with various degrees of success. But in the last few years, I’ve tried something different.  I’ve chosen a single word to focus on.  This word acts as a theme for my life.  I want to grow in a deeper understanding of it and, as a result, live it.  In the past, I’ve chosen words like peace, grace, and faithfulness.

I know some of you have done the same thing in the past.  Some words you have shared with me as your focus include obedience, joy, faith, and service.

The idea is to take this word, whatever it is for you, and daily meditate on it, pray about it, look for opportunities to put it into action, model it, feel it, know it, exude it, look for it in others, and celebrate it.

My word for 2024 is delight.

I wrote about delighting in the Lord (Pillow Test Revisited) back in November.   My obsession with this word began last summer when a friend reminded me that the Lord delights in his children (Psalm 149:4).

At that time, I felt distant from the Lord.  My faith was weak, and my soul was dry.  Even though I was aware of God’s love for me and never questioned it, I hadn’t considered the idea that God delighted in me.  There is a greater intimacy in the concept of delight.  I needed to hear that.

And the Scriptures repeatedly remind us to delight in God and His Word.  Psalm 37:4 tells us to “take delight in the Lord, and he will give us the desires of our heart.”

There is a beautiful freedom and playfulness in delighting in the Lord, but I’m not very good at it.  I’m learning, though.  I’ve found that there is little delight in my day when my focus is solely on getting stuff done and checking off everything on my to-do list.

So, delight is my word for 2024.  I pray that I will grow in understanding what it looks like to delight in the Lord and embrace the Lord’s delight in me.

My goal is to wake up each morning with Psalm 118:24 as the first thing on my mind: This is the day that the Lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it.

I believe I will change for the better, and my life will look different if I learn how to delight in Him and the day that He has made.

Men, what’s your word for 2024?


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