Personally and Professionally
I (Pam Farrel) have selected a word and a verse for the year each January since I was 19. Bill and I when we married at twenty, continued this tradition.
Selecting a Word for the Year helps provide focus. We each choose an area needing the most growth, help or improvement. By focusing our energies, choosing a Word for the Year, a verse, a theme and a clarifying question, we often see powerful results.
Let us share one example : On the fall of 2010, I (Pam) began to experience some physical issues in my body. In January that year, at a Christian Wellness week sponsored by First Place 4 Health, some tests returned that shook me to the core. I was slapped in the face with the reality that my health was at risk unless something changed!
I knew I wanted to live long and strong for God. I also knew one of my books was going to be re-released under the new title 10 Secrets to Living Smart, Savvy and Strong—and I felt like I only had months to get my act back together. I was discouraged—so I instinctively picked up my Bible reading:
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)
Joshua was also not feeling very strong, courageous and he too was discouraged and looking for help and hope. I felt I had found a comrade in arms! I phoned Bill and together we elected to use STRONG as our Word for the Year and this verse from Joshua 1:9 as our verse because Bill too wanted to see strength happen in many areas of his life as well. In addition to personal goals, we set business goals to help our ministry, and book sales become stronger too.
The word strong here means to grow to be strong- so God says it is a process! Courageous is also verb meaning to make strong, bold and victorious. The word discourage is a pretty encompassing emotional word and God was saying, “don’t tremble, be in terror, be dismayed or adopt dread or fear.
Bill and I in a workout, arranged weights to spell out the word STRONG and added the verse to it to create a motivating poster. We hung our hearts on the word STRONG. We adopted the motto, “Stay strong”.
So what are the results of meditating on the word STRONG and studying how God makes one strong? I got strong! I shed over 50 pounds and moved from health risk to health strength. Bill made strides in the areas of career and health he had set goal in too. We checked off business goals month after month to see our ministry ad sales strengthen too.
In what area of life do you need God to make you or your ministry/ business strong?
Here are some tools to help:
Robert Herjavec, entrepreneur and star of ABC’s show Shark Tank says “a goal without a date is just a dream.” In Woman of Influence, I quote Emilie Barnes, “Goals are just dreams with deadlines” Move your dream into reality with a goal plan and follow up. For long range success, we suggest one of our 10 Best Decisions books: for couples, for men, for women, for singles, for parents, for leaders, and for grads.
Select one of these and spend 10 weeks creating a strong foundation for your year, both personally and professionally! Once your goals are written, schedule in time you will need to accomplish those goals. Review Your Word for The Year and Your Best Year Yet goals sheets regularly to check on progress.
For more ideas on how to select and dwell in a word for the year, check out the book, My One Word by Pastor Mike Ashcroft & Rachel Olsen .
Find a word that reflects the desire of your heart for forward movement, make it your one word prayer for the year, find a verse that reflects the heart of this word, then dig in to as many verses as you can find in which that word appears and watch—God will empower you to cross the finish line as a victor too!
Here is my word for 2015:
My prayer is that I will see God’s beauty and that my own life would better reflect the beauty of living by God’s design and plan. I want to enjoy the beauty of some of the fruit of living by God’s beautiful plan- our 35 happy years of marriage and our family with all our kids who love and serve Jesus, our grandkids and adding a new beautiful daughter-in law later in the year.
So what is the word you need to hang your heart on this year? Post it on our Bill and Pam Farrel facebook page and we will pray with you!