So while everyone is out there choosing a “word” for 2018, I was starting to feel like maybe I should too.
I pondered for a bit. There was the usual, “focus” and “fearless” and “intentional,” just to name a few.
I thought about some for myself.
Nope. None of them seemed to fit.
And then it hit me. Like a ton of bricks.
Not your typical word of the year.
But as I thought about it, this is exactly what I want.
I had been pondering holiness so much lately. And how our purpose is to pursue holiness; not worldly, fluffy “happiness.” And sometimes holiness means we are going to struggle and walk through difficulty. But it is ultimately because God wants us to be holy and not happy. (Although, true joy will be found in holiness.)
“To live a holy life is to live a life in conformity to the moral precepts of the Bible and in contrast to the sinful ways of the world.
It is to live a life characterized by the putting off of your old self…and putting on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness (Eph.4).”-Jerry Bridges, The Pursuit of Holiness
I had even been repeating this word over and over in my mind lately when I found myself wanting to nitpick and complain. I’d say in my mind, “Be holy. Be holy.”
Now, for some of you, you may think I am off my rocker. Some of us have a distorted view of even what holiness means. So let me explain.
It does NOT mean I am trying to live a life “holier than thou.” In fact, holiness has nothing to do with what I can do.
It is about God changing me from the inside out. It is about sanctification. It is a process.
“The most basic meaning of the word is to be “set apart” or “dedicated” to God—to belong to God.
“To be a disciple of Jesus Christ requires nothing less than death to our fallen, egocentric selves in order that we might live in and for him. “For whoever wants to save his life will lose it,” says Jesus, “but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?” (Mark 8:35-36). To be holy means that all we are and all we have belongs to God, not ourselves and that every aspect of our lives is to be shaped and directed toward God.”- From Christianitytoday.com
And that is especially why I chose the word, “holy.”
Because those other words for the year generally focus on me, me, me and what I can do. But holy focuses on Him. And what He can do through me.
I can’t “make myself” holy. Sure, I can “act” holy. Or try to “be holy.”
But true holiness comes from God transforming me. Setting me apart to do His will.
And that is EXACTLY where I want to be this year and always.
All Christians are called to be holy. It is a requirement. But I believe that it gets drowned out by all of the self-help noise and focus on what we can do for ourselves. So my focus now will be on what God has called me to be. Losing my life, to find it in Him.
One of the next books on my list to read this year is Holiness by JC Rylee. I am really looking forward to it. I want to stop looking within and look outside of myself, to Jesus.
Yes, that is my word for the year.
This summer, I am hosting a women’s retreat in Gettysburg, PA. In a world of excess, we are going to focus on that fact that Jesus is enough. The world will tell you YOU are enough. But truly, HE is enough. He is all we need. We don’t rely on ourselves, or earthly comforts, but on Him alone. I have lived with it all stripped away, and I have seen that yes, Jesus is enough. In fact, Jesus is MORE than enough.
Early Bird Registration is Open! Join us for this life changing and life-giving event. You will spend two days with other sisters in Christ, tired of what the world offers, and ready to live the life that HE offers.
Check out where I am speaking in 2018—-> SPEAKING (UPDATED)
Listen to the Podcast—-> PODCAST
Watch my YouTube Channel–->YouTube
Visit my homeschooling site–>Bible Based Homeschooling
Shop Simply Living for Him——>SHOP (new items added!)