What word would you choose as your focus word for 2014? Would it be ‘survive’, ‘simplify’, ‘save’, ‘family’, ‘gratitude’, ‘service’, ‘inspire’…?
My word will be ‘choose.’ I discovered it in a pool while water walking. Typically, just getting to the gym is a huge accomplishment for me. It involves ignoring the aches and pains of my multiple sclerosis.
Recently, however, exercising was more grueling. Shoveling snow off our cars had to be done. But my arms were sorer than normal. The whole ordeal got worse when I got into the pool. I heard an annoying sound coming from a nearby utility closet. Steady whirring added to the agony of my exercise. Ugh!
It dawned on me that the bothersome sound had a beat. So I chose to embrace it by matching my steps to the rhythm. Imagining the sound as a metronome distracted me from feeling pain. Synchronized jogging helped relax my mind.
Then I realized that, similarly, I can choose to have more peaceful thoughts in 2014. Romans 8:6 tells me how to accomplish that goal.
“The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.”
The Holy Spirit can help me drown out the droning of my concerns about mental illness (MI). I can ignore the bombardment of ugly thoughts. Fears, worry, frustration, self-pity, and anger will not batter my brain as long as I remain focused on His presence.
I can also choose to have an eternal focus. With the knowledge that in heaven there will be no more tears or suffering. No more MI.
“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things (Colossians 3:2).”
So my word for this New Year will be ‘choose.’ I’ll choose to accept whatever comes my way. I’ll choose to view circumstances with a positive perspective—filtered through the Holy Spirit.
Listen to the hymn: Finding It Home.
I love to reflect on the words: “Just think of stepping on shore and finding it heaven. Of touching a hand and finding it God’s. Of breathing new air and finding it celestial. Of waking up in glory and finding it home.”