Last week I was thinking about my goals for the new year and what direction I wanted to go. I like coming up with a word or phrase to help guide me each year. I had a hard time deciding but kept thinking about the word clarity.
2022 Word of the Year
I wanted clarity of thought, clarity of purpose, and general clarity about where God was leading me. I honestly thought I would use clarity as my word of the year, but then I went to church this morning and realized that while I needed to seek clarity, my focus should be Draw Close.
While our preacher talked about drawing close to God, I feel that the phrase applies across multiple relationships in my life.
Draw Close to God
I have had a saving relationship with Jesus for many years now, but I must always continue to draw closer to Him. I need to continue studying and growing to become more like Christ and better understand his will for my life. (This will also help provide that clarity that I was thinking about.)
Today, my preachers’ message was to read God’s word, study God’s word, and know God’s word. I want to continue working on those things and strengthening my prayer life.
Draw Close to my Husband
My husband and I find ourselves in a good place in our marriage. We survived the rocky early years where we needed to learn how to be married, live and work together, and prioritize our relationship. However, I know that I also need to grow and work on that relationship constantly. We can grow together, or we can grow apart.
So this year, I want to make drawing closer to my husband a priority. I plan to be intentional about date nights, making time to talk with each other uninterrupted (which can be a real challenge with four children), and supporting him in his goals for the new year.
Draw Close to my Children
After Christ and my husband, my children are my next priority. Overall, our family lifestyle (homeschooling and working from home) allows me to spend a great deal of time with my children. However, like with our other relationships, we must continue to draw close to our children. Several years ago, I watched a movie that talked about “tying our children’s heartstrings to ours.” That quote really stuck with me through the years as I work to maintain a close bond with my children.
Every stage and situation has its challenges. In our current stage, my children range from three to fifteen. The challenge is providing time and attention to a toddler and teens, not forgetting the seven-year-old in the middle.
I want to make sure that I find time each week to give focused attention to each child. Not necessarily leaving the house or doing a date (though we love to do those when we can work it out.) I simply want to spend time connecting with each child. That might be working in the garden or listening to music with my oldest, talking about books or cooking with my daughter, playing Legos or reading aloud with my seven-year-old, and doing crafts or playing play-doh with the youngest. Simple things that allow us to spend time together and connect can impact our relationships.
Draw Close to Others
Drawing closer to others is another area where my first word, clarity, comes to play. I plan to spend time praying and finding clarity on how to grow other relationships in my life.
I want clarity on the people God is asking me to reach and what relationships he wants me to strengthen. I know there are only so many hours in a day and somedays I feel stretched too thin. However, I think God will help me discern where to put my time and efforts in drawing close to others.
I want to continue to work on making our home a welcome haven for friends and guests and finding ways that I can pour God’s love into the other people God has placed in our lives.
Overall, while I have no idea what 2022 will bring to the world, I am looking forward to drawing closer to God and others. Do you pick a word of the year? Tell us what you chose this year or what goals you have for the year in the comments.