“Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children…walk as children of the Light and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.”
Well, it took a little longer than usual for me to figure it out, but my Word of the Year finally chose me.
By definition- a social unit, considered as a group, whether dwelling together or not.
Seems like that would have been the obvious choice for me this year, right? No, at first I kept feeling the word ‘assignment’ whenever I prayed or thought about my word. It wasn’t until very early this morning that everything became crystal clear.
I was laying in bed. Our clip-on fan, pointed away from us, whirring as white noise in the corner. Max (our chihuahua) snuggled deep under the covers, somewhere near my knees. It was morning, but it was still dark. Too dark to get up. I could tell by his tossing and turning, Kevin was half awake already too.
It popped into my head for the hundredth time.
What is it with this word?, I wondered again.
Then I remembered something I had read the night before. It was in Jesus’ final prayer. Surrounded by 11 of His disciples, He looked up to the sky and said, “In the same way that you gave me a mission in the world, I give them a mission in the world”. Things really started to click after that.
Click: A mission. An assignment. Then, click: THE assignment Jesus gave us: “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength…and you must love your neighbor as yourself. No other commandment is greater than these.”
Love God. Love others. Plain and si
mplegnificant. I grabbed my phone (dimmed the screen brightness as fast as I could- eek!) and went to a Bible app to read more about this assignment.
Click: Ephesians 5. “Imitate God in everything you do, therefore, because you are his dear children…walk as children of the Light and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord”.
Click: I remembered a verse I had shared with my friend Amanda the day before, “I have placed you here as a light for other nations; you must take my saving power to everyone on earth“. (Isaiah 49:6)
God = Heavenly Father. Everyone on earth = His dear children.
That’s the word I want to see posted around my house, and in my car, and on a bracelet I can wear this year. That’s the word that will remind me that my life’s assignment is to ‘imitate God’ (my Heavenly Father), because I am his ‘dear child’ that’s called to ‘walk as a light’ (which He “placed me here to be”) so that I can take the news of His saving power to ‘everyone on earth’ (His family).
Can I get a Hallelujah!? 😀 So fun how that was all revealed to me. I really want to be more intentional about those things this year. *Gotta* stay tuned in to family and the still, small voice that whispered it.
Seeing the word family will also remind me to thank God for our soon-to-be family of five! What a blessing to be able do life with them under one roof this year. Sure, challenges are bound to arise (Hello? In-laws AND a toddler- LOL!), especially in this first year together, but I know Who to lean on when the going gets tough and the road takes unexpected twists and turns. Proverbs 3:5-6 promises, “In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your path”.
I also want to be mindful of praying for my parents and brother more often this year. They all live in other states, so we don’t see or talk to each other as much as we used to. Seeing the word family will help me to remember to lift up special and specific prayers for them, as well as reach out to them on a more regular basis.
There’s one more reason the word family makes so much sense this year, and I’m smiling just thinking about the story I’m about to tell you. 🙂
It happened back in November. Kevin, Sweet P and I were sitting at the big wooden table on the “bonding balcony” at the orphanage in Haiti. We were playing with a mountain of lego blocks. He was sitting on Kevin’s lap, and I was sitting on the chair catty-corner from them. Normally, I don’t like interrupting him when he’s busy creating (Don’t even get me started on his “concentration face” and the soft, drawn-out grunting noise he makes when he’s really “in the zone”!), but on that particular day, and at that particular moment, I decided to go through our names with him again. (I used his real name then, but since I’m not allowed to share it yet, I’ll use “Sweet P” to share the rest of this story.) I said, “Sweet P!”, in a way that would (hopefully) make him want to look up from what he was doing. His eyes did shoot up to meet mine, but he continued to press Legos together as he looked. I pointed at myself and said, “Mama”. Then I pointed at Kevin and said, “Papa”. Then I pointed at him and said his name. He had already looked back down at his Lego creation at this point, but y’all, a moment later a gorgeous grin spread across my child’s face, and a second later, he looked back up at me and beamed, “MAMA!”, and then turned to Kevin and exclaimed, “PAPA!”, and then after saying his own name, he chanted, “FAN-MI! FAN-MI! FAN-MI!”, pounding the legos he had in his hands on the tabletop. He shouted the Haitian word for FAMILY with joy and enthusiasm…and aboutUS!!! My heart nearly turned to confetti!