Seems like everyone is talking about their “one word” for the New Year. At one point in my life, I would have said, “Wait…I only get one??” I am a wordy girl for sure! But God brought someone into my life recently that helped me find my one word for 2014…only it happened in 2013…and I wasn’t looking for a word, I was looking for an action plan.
Carey Bailey is a Life Coach I met when I attended the SheSpeaks conference for writers and speakers last summer. I contacted her afterward, when traveling along life’s path suddenly started to feel like a train derailment. Her encouragement helped my little engine get back on track! Carey explains that a Life Coach doesn’t try to solve problems by looking back at their causes, like a counselor or therapist would, but instead partners with a client to solve problems by making plans, taking actions, finding answers. I am an action-oriented, problem solving person, so this approach really spoke to me. I am not big on looking back for excuses…I have found that, in me, they just delay growth.
Here is what I mean: And as they brought them out, one said, “Escape for your life. Do not look back or stop anywhere in the valley. Escape to the hills, lest you be swept away.” …Then the LORD rained on Sodom and Gomorrah sulfur and fire from the LORD out of heaven. And he overthrew those cities, and all the valley, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and what grew on the ground. But Lot’s wife, behind him, looked back, and she became a pillar of salt (Genesis 19:17, 24-26).
That’s me. When I look back, instead of forward, I always get stuck. Like a big honkin’ pillar of salt. To be sure, we must learn from our difficulties. They are just wasted pain if we don’t. But if any past experience has laid a foundation for sin in my life, it cannot have a hold on me anymore. Jesus paid a very high price to set me free. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price (1 Cor 6:19-20a).
Now, I look to see where the broken places are leading me to. And as I journey along, I can appreciate how the Lord uses everything in life, for His purposes. He is about the business of transforming me, more and more, into the image of Him. And you too! In order for that to happen, we have to leave a bit of us behind every time He brings us through a rough patch. This is the process of sanctification. This is Everyday Holiness:
Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. Only let us hold true to what we have attained (Phil 3:12-16).
I have realized that Jesus’ sacrifice simply takes away any excuse for staying stuck where I am.
My one word? Integrity. More on that soon!