The Best Goal for 2018

31. December 2017 faith 6
The Best Goal for 2018

She always had good intentions.

She loved to make lists, and it’s proven that goals drive us to success, or at least they give us  reason to try, so she’d pull out paper and pen and ink six resolutions for the new year. Funny thing was, they often were the same as the year before.

  1. Eat better.
  2. Exercise more.
  3. Spend less money.
  4. Get more sleep.
  5. Read more books.
  6. Get a hobby.

She wasn’t alone. At least 32 percent of Americans will do the same, and their goals will look much like these.

Resolutions can be Good

We stick with them for a month or two (at least.)

But many of us have thrown away the whole resolution making because we don’t like to be quitters. You can’t be a quitter if you never try, right? Why set ourselves up for failure?

Rather than resolutions, some of us have started choosing a word for the year.

I first heard of this concept in a sermon preached by one of our local pastors, Mike Ashcraft. He’s even written a book on it. Here’s the idea:

The concept of My One Word is simple. Lose the long list of resolutions―all your sweeping promises to change―and do something about one thing this year instead of nothing about everything. Choose just one word that represents what you most hope God will do in you, and focus on it for an entire year. This single act will force clarity and concentrate your efforts. As you focus on your word over an extended period of time, you position yourself for God to form your character at a deep, sustainable level. Growth and change will result.

I love this idea.

As you focus on your word over an extended period of time, you position yourself for God to form your character at a deep, sustainable level. Growth and change will result. 

Every mid-December I begin wondering what my “word” should be for the new twelve months ahead. Rather than resolutions, I focus on one word the Lord is drawing me to. As I prayed and pondered, listened and watched, there were many great words–especially for someone who loves words, but only one made my spirit tighten deep in my belly. Only one stuck out, highlighted by His Spirit.

That word was Wisdom.

Just typing it now makes me excited as my mind imagines the many ways wisdom can be studied and incorporated in life.

In the years past, I confess, when I got a word from the Lord to focus on for the year, I didn’t do a lot of digging into scripture or study. I prayed about it, tried to be open to experiencing it or learning about it vicariously through life’s happenings, but I haven’t dug deep in to the Word about the word.

So, this year, I’ve decided to be more intentional.

I’d love for you to join me in my journey toward wisdom. Could there be any better goal for 2018?

Imagine how wisdom can affect our lives.

  • Wisdom in making important decision.
  • Wisdom to speak the right things at the right time.
  • Wisdom _____________ (you fill in the blank).

What would you do with wisdom if it was poured upon you?

As we study wisdom this week, I will be praying that the Lord will show you the word he has for you to focus on that will position to receive all that he has for you in 2018.

My friends, life is so much more than stuff, or appearance, or achievement. All of those things are temporary, empty, hollow shells. They can’t bring us peace and true fulfillment like walking deeper with Jesus can.

Each day we are preparing for eternity. Click To Tweet

 

But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. James 3:17

The Greek word for wisdom is sophia. 

Can you imagine what a day of walking in wisdom from heaven would look like? Exchanging our striving thoughts for His?

This is a great commentary from BibleRef.com. 

James describes the characteristics of the wisdom from heaven. This is God’s wisdom. This is the wisdom of those who trust God to provide all they need, to continue to give them every good gift (James 1:17), and to fulfill every desire of their hearts for eternity with Him in heaven. As a result, these believers willingly sacrifice opportunities for “more and more” money, pleasure, and power. Instead, those who trust in God make themselves available to serve the needs of others. . . .  It’s amazing how much easier and more pleasant life becomes when a Christian gives up the requirement of getting what he or she wants at all costs. Without that agenda, there’s less and less need for conflict. And yet, the only way to give up that agenda is to believe that our good God is providing all we need in every moment.

Here’s our reading plan this week as we seek sophia. 🙂 

 

 

Sneak Peek of Printable

Proverbs 4:6-7: Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding.

  • I thought this commentary very helpful: “It is not enough to obey wisdom. One must love it, just as one must love God (Deuteronomy 6:5, etc.). The first step in attaining wisdom is to acquire (absorb) the teachings of wisdom, to hear and assimilate them, even before one can properly understand and apply them. (The Jewish Study Bible)

God’s Word is our source of wisdom. How can we apply the truth of Prov. 4:6-7 and the commentary above to the Bible?

 

1 Corinthians 1:25: For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.

  • Does this verse give you any comfort? How can you apply it to your life?

 

Colossians 2:2-3: My goal is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

  • Can you see how wisdom is hidden is Christ? How was it wise of God to send Jesus?

 

James 3:17:  But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.

  • What must we have to have wisdom? (Hint: His fruits involve peace, patience, kindness, etc.) Pray for more of the Spirit.

 

James 1:5: If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

  • I love that even wisdom is only a prayer away. When you get into a tough situation today, pray for wisdom, wait on God, and see what happens.

 

1 Corinthians 1:30: It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.

  • How has God redeemed situations or wounds in your life by His wisdom?

 

Proverbs 3:13:  Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding, for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold.

  • Write a prayer asking for wisdom and understanding through the Lord’s perspective, eternal vision.

Click here to download or print the scriptures and prompts to use in your own quiet time 

 

Daily Broadcasts

I’ll be back this week at 8:20 AM ET on Facebook Live. Let’s gather together around my kitchen table with a cup of coffee and our Bibles and journals to dig deep into the word of wisdom for wisdom.

Hope you can join us!

 

Wisdom Seeker,

 

Andy

 

PS. If this was encouraging, and you don’t want to miss any Bite of Bread reading plans and posts, subscribe today! You’ll receive a 22-Day Devotion on Psalm 119 called Finding the Beauty {Full} in God’s Word.Just click here to dig deep to live fully. 🙂 

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6 thoughts on “The Best Goal for 2018”

  • 1
    Debbie on January 1, 2018 Reply

    Happy New Year Andy! I started reading/listening to Proverbs 1 this morning. I highlighted and meditated on several verses, but I like the visual of “What you learn from them (instructions and teachings) will crown you with grace and be a chain of honor around your neck.” NLT

    I’m leaning into choosing NOURISH as my word for the year. I’m not 100% there, but this word is calling out to me and its multitude of meanings.

    • 2
      Andy on January 2, 2018 Reply

      Hi Debbie, Proverbs will be really great to study. I love your word for the year. I see it very fitting. The meanings are endless. Thanks for stopping by! Blessings!

  • 3
    Sandra Chambers on January 1, 2018 Reply

    Excellent post Andy! Thanks for reminding me about the “One Word.” God as already given me that word, although I didn’t realize it until I read your post thiis morning.. Excited to begin a new year.

    • 4
      Andy on January 2, 2018 Reply

      Thanks dear friend! That’s cool that wisdom has been one of your words before and you just realized it. I love how Holy Spirit works. Much love!

  • 5
    debbie on January 1, 2018 Reply

    I started studying this word last year. I ask for it everyday.
    What a great gift to ask for.

    • 6
      Andy on January 2, 2018 Reply

      You are one of the wisest women I know. Now I know why. 🙂 Blessings, my friend.

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