First of all, I know I have not posted in a VERY long time, and there are some of you who have followed me regularly (hi Mom) that have been asking about what I’ve been doing and why I up and quit blogging… well, in short, 2017 sucked. Sorry about the language, but that’s the best I could come up with. Since we are talking about “words for the year” I’d say that, although I don’t think I had designated a word for last year, in hindsight I’d probably label it SURVIVAL.
I survived 2017.
Don’t get me wrong, a lot of good things came out of it, lots of new friends, going back to college (more on that in a minute), new church, new school for my youngest son, new dreams, 2 new favorite drinks at Starbucks…all kinds of new stuff. Also, lots of hard stuff, which has a lot to do with why I wasn’t super talkative here on the blog, and also where I got my word for 2018. I fight it every year, this whole “one word’ thing. I mean, a year is a long time, how am I supposed to pick just one word? Alas, although every rebellious bone in my body is cringing, I picked one…you ready for it…???
My “one word” for 2018 is…
Exciting, I know. But you see, if 2017 taught me one thing, it is that I must KNOW what I believe and why I believe it. Most of my life, if you would ask me why I believe something, there was a 50/50 chance (at best) that I would back it up with scripture. But too often, I’d simply regurgitate something I heard someone preach. And I fear that maybe it’s the same for many in the Church. I wonder if we spend so much time “meditating” on Instagram or Facebook or ESPN or a news channel or even “good” things like sermons or podcasts or Christian books, that we “forget” to know for ourselves what we believe and why we believe it.
This was a question I was forced to ask myself, and I didn’t like the answer. I love God, I know God. But I could definitely be doing both so much better. We all could.
Hear me, this isn’t a post to make you feel guilty about not reading your bible enough. Trust me…I think posts like that are ridiculous. Because when has guilt ever worked to modify behavior? At least not for the long run.
This is merely a question: What do you KNOW?
You see, a few years ago, I went on this little retreat (I have told you about it before) and in that process, I began to realize my why. I began to define the call on my life. This call was one that is so simple and really it is the same for all of us who follow Jesus. But these words took on a deeper meaning this past year than I ever expected. My calling is to lead people from merely believing in God, to knowing Him.
Thus began this crazy journey of going back to school. In just a couple of days, I will be starting my second semester of bible college. The plan is to finish my undergrad (again, a shout out to my Mom for forcing me to get a degree all those years ago so I don’t have to start from scratch!) and then go on to seminary after that. Why? you ask. To be better equipped to fulfill my purpose.
I have never had a difficult time with faith. Sure, there have been seasons that my faith has been tested, but relationship with God has never been hard for me. I’m relational – like super relational. So having a relationship with God, came natural. But over this last year, I felt a stirring to not just do what comes easily for me – engaging God on a heart level – but to engage my mind in pursuit of knowing Him more.
I would like to invite you to come along with me. I am going to start, along with my family, by beginning simply. Because we all have to start somewhere. So let’s begin by memorizing a few verses. I’ll post a verse once a week to Instagram and Facebook (pending sickness, or finals week, or the apocalypse…). I do this with my kids by making the verse the background on my phone for the week and we memorize it in the car on the way to school. And who knows, I may even be inspired to blog about some of these verses here.
My prayer is that we would read these verses, hide them in our hearts and begin to ask God what they mean. I pray that this will drive us right where we need to be and give us a hunger, not just for knowing more about Jesus, or knowing more bible-y stuff. But to know Him more. Because isn’t this why our Heavenly Father compiled this 66-book love letter? So we could see His heart and know Him more, and then live like it.
“I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against You.” Psalm 119:11
BONUS: Subscribe to the blog by entering your email address and I’ll occasionally send you free pdfs of some of the verses we’ll be memorizing. OR – follow me on Instagram and I’ll include free screenshots in my instastory.
Here’s to knowing Him more, together, in 2018…
Here is the first verse we are going to memorize…