I took off the last two weeks from blogging, and I really enjoyed the break. Truth be told, I needed it!
As much as I felt neutral about 2014 towards the end of last year, God (yet again!) surprised me with a One Word for 2014.
Often during 2013, I would find myself saying or thinking: “I am all over the map!” In my zeal to live out my One Word for 2013, “community,” I dove into the deep end of the pool and ended up feeling pulled in too many directions.
So… focus it is in 2014!
Focus on the Father
Restoring and reinvigorating my relationship with God is my primary focus. In 2013, my spiritual growth was spotty at best. God didn’t move; I did, by allowing other gods to step in and have a comfy seat in my life. Mea culpa.
I recently re-read a journal entry from 2009 and was intrigued by my response to reading John 5:19: “The Son watches the Father closely and then mimics the work of the Father.” Based on that verse, my focus should be on:
- performing miracles;
- drawing others to God;
- in close communion with the Father;
- obeying fully;
- dying to self;
- shunning legalism and religiosity;
- reaching out to the least of these;
- changing lives.
Hmmm. Gotta trust God to show me how to create that focus and to give me the courage to take the necessary action.
Focus on creating a better story
I began reading Donald Miller’s Storyline workbook last year. Miller’s goal is to help people live better stories by embracing the negative turns in our lives and flipping them into positives.
I want my subplot in God’s big story to have impact and a legacy. It won’t happen if I’m bogged down by too many activities that lead nowhere. The goal is for me to live a better story with the years I have left.
Focus on who and what matter most
- By releasing myself from stagnant thinking and action in order to make space for what is beneficial and productive. It may mean unsubscribing, offline and online, from things (and persons) that are good but may be standing in the way of what is great.
- By being honest about what I really want to achieve, admitting what works and what doesn’t, and being intentional about shunning “busy work.”
- By using my time purposefully rather than giving in to randomness.
- By creating very simple goals and approaching them systematically.
- By cultivating relationships that replenish and challenge, and and by pruning those that have no growth potential.
I’m excited to see what “focus” will lead me into in 2014! I believe it’ll mean minimal defragmentation, less clutter, and an embracing of “less is more.” Matthew 6:6 sums up how I hope it’ll pan out:
“Here’s what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.”
Do you have a One Word for 2014? How do you plan to incorporate “focus” into your life?