In Others’ Words: One Word 2015

 

Phillippians 16 NASB 2014 You may not be ready to think about the 2015 yet, but I’ve been thinking about the upcoming new year since August. Yes, yes, I have.

Those of you who’ve hung around this blog long enough know I don’t do resolutions — rather, I focus on one word for an entire year. Well, this year I realized what next year’s word was fairly early.

But, as I like to do each year, I’ll recap the past nine years of words before I share what my word will be for year ten. (Wow! A decade of words! I ought to celebrate somehow, don’t you think?)

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 Success-Vince-Lombardi-11.6.13 thoughts go wandering. (The tree image/quote is from my 2013 One Word blog post.)

The word for 2015 slipped up on me slowly, as I seemed to write nonstop, week after week. I found myself . . . well, coming to the end of myself in a lot of ways. And I stumbled onto the idea that I needed to be collaborating with God as I wrote.

Collaborate.

Isn’t that a beautiful word?

Collaborate means 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.

As always, I’ve wanted a verse to anchor my word to, and my treasured friend, author Cynthia Ruchti, shared the perfect one with me while we were at a writers retreat in Monterey:

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it (complete it) until the day of Christ Jesus (Philippians 1:6 NASB)

I’m still looking for my visual to accompany me one word — but I know I’ll find it before the new year begins.

In Your Words: What about you? What was your word for 2014? If you already know your word for 2015, I’d love for you to share! And if you do resolutions instead, how have those worked out for you this year?

To celebrate a decade of focusing on one word a year, I’m giving away one copy of My One Word, by Mike Ashcraft and Lisa Olsen, a wonderful book that helps you “lose the long list of resolutions … and do something about one thing this year instead of nothing about everything.” Leave a comment below and share your word for 2014 or 2015!

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20 Comments

  1. November 7, 2014, 5:26 am   /  Reply

    I actually had to look back over my prayer journal to see what my word was for 2014. It was strength, as in God’s strength. I’ve certainly had to rely on His strength this year. I’m beginning to wonder if the one word thingy is a good idea. I think it might be a little (note to self- delete little) LOT like praying for patience. Because if you pray for patience, how does God teach it to you? Yeah, put you in situations where you have to learn patience. 😉

    So, with trepidation, I will find my word and get back to you when I discover what it is God wants me to learn more of in the coming year. Oh, I hope it”s not patience…

  2. November 7, 2014, 5:54 am   /  Reply

    Thank you so much for introducing me to “one word.” I started following your blog in 2012 and started my “one word” in 2013. In 2013, God gave me “moderation.” For 2014, God gave me grace. I learned a lot more in 2014 about my part to play. God may give me the word but then it’s my job to embrace it and learn what God is trying to teach me.

    I got really excited as this year God gave me my word for 2015 in October. That was sooner than He had given me my previous two words: HOPE! I’m so excited to get the word HOPE. We have been through some rough journeys. I have to admit. I was scared at first to think God was giving me HOPE – did that mean we still had lots of rough roads ahead when we had been traveling a difficult journey for a long time already? I know He knows I’m TIRED! 🙂 No…He calmed my heart. Hope means enjoying the journey, embracing the good and being filled with His peace and joy while knowing without doubt God has great things planned because we His children. Keep obeying, keep trusting – HOPE is a good thing. And if I’m off track, I have confidence He will steer me back to what He wants me to embrace regarding HOPE.

    Thanks again Beth. And I’m excited to think I could win the book My One Word. Asking God for “one word” for the year has truly helped me grow closer to Him. Thank you!!

    I pass on the concept of “one word” all the time and write about it on my blog too. How you can help but write about the “one word” that God is teaching you about? Can’t keep the blessings that God gives to myself. Nope! They are meant to be talked about and shared…to offer others, HOPE.

    [email protected]

    Blessings to you today and congratulations on your word. I’m excited about the great things God is doing in your life. As I love to say, “What God is willing to do for one, He’s waiting to do for all of His children.”

    in Him,

    Cheri 🙂

  3. November 7, 2014, 6:53 am   /  Reply

    Have no idea what my word for 2014 was. Don’t care. It was a beast of a year, and right now I feel like I’ve gone several rounds with Muhammad Ali (the boxer, not the mid-19th century Egyptian general). Upright but wrecked.

    For 2015 there are things to do – SP three finished fiction and two NF MS’s, and finish two fiction WIP and get them out as well. No sense in trying to find an agent; don’t have the energy, and I know I can tell a good story that readers enjoy. Fewer readers than might be otherwise, but there will be some.

    But a 2015 word – no. Nothing comes to mind that doesn’t sound false for me, or like whistling past the graveyard.

    • November 7, 2014, 12:01 pm   /  Reply

      Andrew: Your word is brave. Always has been, always will be.

      • November 7, 2014, 12:55 pm   /  Reply

        Thank you, Beth; a large part of courage comes from those days when I ride on the shoulders of giants.

        You among them.

  4. November 7, 2014, 7:31 am   /  Reply

    You were the one to introduce me to the idea of one word as well. 🙂 My word for this year is ENOUGH. I’m still learning about this word, and how it affects my perceptions about God, myself, others. I’m praying about my word for 2015. 🙂

    I LOVE yours! 🙂 Can’t wait to hear what God does in and through you with this word!

  5. November 7, 2014, 7:34 am   /  Reply

    That’s one of my favorite verses ever. Ever, ever, ever… 😀

    True story: I think I had a word at the beginning of this year…I think? But I didn’t do good about focusing on it, apparently, because I honestly don’t remember what it was. Bad Melissa!

    If I’m honest, 2014 has been a winding road of a year. There have been such huge highs, a few lows…but the longest and most challenging have been those stretches in the middle, filled with lots of uncertainty. I’m not sure what my word for 2015 might be, but if I focus on one, I think it may have to do with what I AM certain about…we shall see…

    Love reading about your words and how you come up with them!

  6. Susan
    November 7, 2014, 8:03 am   /  Reply

    Oh! My word slipped up on me around the same time this year too, Beth. Which startled me b/c typically God doesn’t speak it to me until after the first of the year or so:) But toward the end of summer God kept bringing me back to the word: Masterpiece:) Love how he’s been working it into my heart and life!

  7. November 7, 2014, 9:01 am   /  Reply

    I think Andrew’s 2014 One Word is Stand. Sounds like you’ve done it.

    Beth, I appreciate getting this verse in my inbox today. It occurs to me that it encompasses both your 2014 & 2015 Word. 🙂

    I’m late to the Confidence party, (51 is a tad late…eh?) so I’ll take the baton from you on that one for 2015. But for me, it must be combined with Self-Respect which I hereby declare as One Word. I’ve been a firm believer in being transparent about my flaws. I always thought people trusted a humble person more than a seemingly arrogant one, but I have found time and again that this kind of transparency backfires.

    A lot.

    Though I can laugh at my own weaknesses, I find that those who don’t know me mistake my confessions of insecurity or flaws as reason to roundly dismiss me and what I have to say. I suppose it’s high time I show myself a bit more respect if I’m ever to make a right first impression, if I have any intention of being respected.

    Dang it, I’ve gone and been too transparent again. But I have 53 days to organize an attack plan. 🙂

    Thank you for your steadfast encouragement and wisdom, Beth. I’ve been a blog lurker this year, but still treasure up your words and continue to ponder them in my heart…

  8. Mippy/Sabrina
    November 7, 2014, 9:53 am   /  Reply

    My one word for 2015 will be BELIEVE. I’m not sure how or where I’ll apply that word but that is my word for 2015. 🙂

  9. November 7, 2014, 10:11 am   /  Reply

    Joy & contentment

  10. Donna Haynes Robertson
    November 7, 2014, 11:15 am   /  Reply

    I received my word for 2014 from a mentor at the 2013 ACFW Conference. In praying for me and my future, she gave me the word Saturate. It took me a while to embrace that word and it has been a year of change and lots of ups and downs. I have worked at saturating myself in His Word and saturating in my writing. With less than two months left in the year, I am approaching a peace with the word and with the work God has done in me this year. I am so grateful to the lovely Janice Hanna Thompson for the prayer and the friendship. I do not have my word for 2015 yet. But I have been doing the One Word for several years, as resolutions are really not something I have had success with. I needed this reminder to begin praying about the word for 2015. Thank you.

  11. November 7, 2014, 12:17 pm   /  Reply

    Hi Beth,

    Some years I’ve agonized over my word of the year. I even used the same word two years. As I read your review, the word HOPE resonated with me. I’m going to pray about that for 2015.

    I also want to share some great news with you. A few weeks back I asked you to pray for my son, Scott, as her prepared for job interviews. Even though he doesn’t graduated until May, many companies began the interview process. He received two job offers, and he was excited about both. He made a decision and accepted one . Thanks so much for your prayers.

  12. November 7, 2014, 2:08 pm   /  Reply

    I am thinking my word for 2015 will be trust. I m still praying about my word.

  13. November 7, 2014, 5:12 pm   /  Reply

    Beth, collaborate is a great word for the new year (can’t believe that it’s coming so soon!)

    I don’t usually do resolutions or words, but a phrase came to mind a few nights ago. “Let go and let God.” If I learn to let go and let God do His thing, I’m hoping I’ll find a deeper sense of contentment and peace.

    Blessings,
    Andrea
    [email protected]

  14. November 7, 2014, 11:08 pm   /  Reply

    I have loved each and every comment — yes, I have read each one today. My usual custom of responding slipped past me — it was a rather chaotic day in unexpected ways. I will announce the winner of the book on Monday!

  15. November 10, 2014, 12:04 pm   /  Reply

    Beth, I love your word. I usually title my blog posts with one word. But I’ve never chosen a “one word” for the year. I’ll be thinking on it.

    • November 10, 2014, 7:08 pm   /  Reply

      Keep me posted, Shelli!

  16. Patty
    December 29, 2014, 10:07 am   /  Reply

    I think my word for 2015 is SHINE. It speaks to me about healthy choices, happiness and feeling joy. I like it. 🙂

  17. January 1, 2015, 7:11 pm   /  Reply

    […] you have no idea what I’m talking about, here’s a beautifully written post by another author I’d admire, Beth Vogt, explaining her history with One Little Word, as well […]

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