In Others’ Words: Choosing One Word for 2017


Are you ready to talk about your One Word for 2017? I am! 

This is my twelfth year to focus on one word. An even dozen. Wow. And once again, I have to admit that I was wondering “Where’s my One Word for 2017?” Most years I’ve known what my One Word was going to be by August or September, but the last two years October has loomed without a One Word in sight.

I discovered my One Word for 2017 a few nights ago.  But before I tell you what that word is, here’s my annual recap of my One Word in years past:

2006: gratitude – I kept a gratitude journal and found my “glass-half-empty” attitude revolutionized.
2007: simplify – A severe illness turned this word into survival. I embraced simpler things in ways I never imagined.
2008: content – as in “be content with such things as you have” (Hebrews 13:5) I bought a lot less that year!
2009 & 2010: forgiveness – I had a lot to learn and unlearn about forgiveness.
2011: hope – A word I clung to when life hurt or when my heart ached for others who were hurting. There were times I could have asked “Why?” Instead, I asked myself, “Are you going to abandon hope?” My answer: No.
2012: trust – During a year of change, I faced doubting versus trusting — and chose to trust. I also began posting trust quotes on my Facebook page to encourage myself and others.
2013: confidence – I feel so much stronger emotionally after keeping my heart and mind set on “not throwing away my confidence.” (Hebrews 10:35-36) And yes, I continued the tradition of posting confidence quotes on my FB page.
2014: think – I tried to anchor my thinking to truth more and more, rather than letting my thoughts go wandering.
2015: collaborate – to work jointly on an activity, especially to produce or create something. Synonyms: co-operate, join forces, team up, band together, work together, participate, combine, ally.
2016: prosper – to act wisely, as in “And David was acting wisely (prospering) in all his ways for the LORD was with him.” 1 Samuel 18 14. This word stayed with me all through the past year as I confronted a lot of major (and minor) decisions.

My word for 2017 is: inheritance.

Psalm 16:5-6 (NIV) says: Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.” 

At times I’ve talked negatively about my inheritance. Not the one I’ve received from God, no. But there can be emotional “inheritances” that carry down from generation to generation within families … some good, some harmful. Last Thursday night as I battled insomnia, I reached for one of the Scripture verse cards I keep stacked on my bedside table. The verse I read was Psalm 16:5-6, and the word “inheritance” seemed to be written in bright, bold letters.

I’m excited to see what God wants to teach me about the inheritance He has for me.

In Your Words: If you chose a word for 2016, how has that one word changed you? What’s your one word for 2017 — or are you still thinking about it? 

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  1. October 4, 2016, 12:08 am   /  Reply

    My word for 2016 was SnOoPyDaNcE. Didn’t quite work out. Two thousand sixteen sucked.

    So I have a new word for 2017, assuming I live to see the turn of the year –


    I will obliterate anything or anyone that gets in my way. Mercy is for the weak. I may not thrive, but I darn well intend to survive, and will do the necessary to get there.

    • October 4, 2016, 9:17 am   /  Reply

      Hey, my friend: I like your 2017 word! And I’ve learned that our One Words can morph in ways we never imagined. There was some SnOoPy DaNcInGing this past year in the midst of other stuff. Onward to 2017 with FEROCITY!

    • October 5, 2016, 9:46 am   /  Reply

      SnOoPyDaNcE. 🙂

  2. October 4, 2016, 6:11 am   /  Reply

    I love your word for you, Beth, and totally agree. I don’t keep track of them as well as you, though I should. I’ve been impressed this last week or so that mine for this coming year and season is EXPECTATION and two major things have already come into reality WAY BEYOND what I had any reasonable reason to expect–so thrilled. Wishing you a blessed and amazing 2017 early!

    • October 4, 2016, 9:19 am   /  Reply

      What a wonderful word to focus on for 2017: EXPECTATION! I love, love, love this! How exciting to see God unfold this word for you, Dee!

  3. October 4, 2016, 9:13 am   /  Reply

    I love your One-word for this year. I didn’t choose one for 2016, but I’m being impressed about the word gratitude. I like the idea of a gratitude journal. I think I’ll keep it in my Jesus Calling Journal and every day list those things I’m grateful for. Gratitude is actually what the devotional is focusing on right now. 🙂

    • October 4, 2016, 9:21 am   /  Reply

      Pat: As you know from my list, “gratitude” was my very first One Word. It was life-changing for me. Absolutely life-changing. Here’s to a life-changing 2017 for you!

  4. October 5, 2016, 9:45 am   /  Reply

    Beth, what a healing word or, at least, that’s what came to mind when I was reading your post. You were one of the writers who introduced me to One Word and I’ve shared it with lots of friends. One of the networking groups I’m in chooses a group word, as well as most of its 25 members choosing a personal word. It’s life changing, really.

    John and I joke sometimes about the fact that while friends are receiving inheritances, we never will … but sometimes it’s not funny. I really like choosing it as a positive word and looking at all it has to offer throughout the year. I’m adding it to my maybe list since my word doesn’t usually choose me until the end of the year, so I still have time. 🙂 I also like the word in front of it in the scripture, “delightful.” Hmmm… adding it to my list also.

    May your inheritance in 2017 be huge. <3

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