Happy New Year, Dear Readers! I pray this first week of January finds you well and full of hope for 2016.
Call me crazy, but can anyone find any piece of media sans les resolutions??? I’ve never seen more articles or ads for diet and exercise, FREE workout programs, blah, blah, blah. (The fact that “diet” is a four-letter word is not lost on yours truly.)
Two favorite cocktail napkins offer brilliant advice:
“D.I.E.T. stands for:
Did I Eat That?” (Translation: Really? Again?)
And take a gander at this one:
I laughed out loud upon receiving a huge promo’ card from Jazzercise. Their New Year’s slogan? “New Year, New Rear.” Alrighty then.
Famous for making-but-not-keeping New Year’s Resolutions, I’m suggesting we all choose just one word for 2016. There’s a book about it: My One Word: Change Your Life With Just One Word by Mike Ashcraft and Rachel Olsen.
While I talked about this last year, and while many of my friends have been choosing one word a year for years, I still maintain such an exercise is well worth your time. Yes, you have my permission to call it exercise!!!
Hubster and I had the most exciting New Year’s Eve Celebration this year. For the second year in a row, his siblings came over for dinner. Astonishingly, also for the second year in a row, we all stayed awake to see the ball drop!
Pictured left to right:
Back row: Billy and Marte Hoagland
Front row: Hubster John, Yours Truly with Princess Grace on my lap, Margee Rulketter (Notice the Santa Claus carving Brother Bill has valiantly placed above Margee’s head…He’s wildly living out the year before entering his sixth decade.), and Van and Joe Gleissner. My John’s the baby, followed by Billy, then Margee, then Van of the four Hoagland sibs.)
Further fascinating, after a fun game we played, John posed a question: “If you could only choose one word to help you stay focused for 2016, what would it be?”
With their permission, I’d like to give you a peek into our family, along with a Scripture verse or two to go along with each of our words. When you see us around town, feel free to ask us how we’re doing with our words as we agreed to hold each other accountable.
Billy and Marte kicked us off. Billy chose aware, challenging himself to keep his eyes looking outward, not within himself. Many of his patients have shared with me how much his praying for them before surgery has blessed them abundantly. I predict being more aware will come easily for Billy.
Philippians 2:3 in the NASB says, “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves.”
Marte chose attentive because she wants to become a better listener. I confess I got tickled when I read Luke 10:39. It’s about Mary and Martha entertaining Jesus in their home. Martha (which is Marte’s real name, thence the humor) becomes irked at her sister, Mary, who’s sitting at the Lord’s feet listening to every word He spoke. Just don’t mimic Martha, Marte!
You’ve certainly listened to and advised me countless times over the years! You can easily do this!
Love this: Isaiah 55:3a says, “Come to me with your ears wide open. Listen and you will find life.” (NLT)
We all need to heed Brother James’ advice when he tell us in James 1:19, “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this:
Everyone should be
quick to listen,
slow to speak
and slow to become angry.”(NIV)
Joe chose renewal because this is going to be a big year for him with retirement approaching in June. He’s been the President and CEO of New Directions Housing Corporation for thirty years. We were all soooo proud of him at their Dream Builders Breakfast in early December.
(New Directions is an awesome, inspirational organization. If you’re not familiar with it, please check it out. www.NDHC.org)
A great verse for all of us comes from Psalm 51:10
Another beautiful one is Lamentations 5:21 which says,
“Restore us to yourself, Lord, that we may return; renew our days as of old.” You go, Joe!
Van chose presence to remind her to “just be”—as in not worrying about the future, nor stewing over the past.
Isaiah 43:18 tells us to: “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.”
While Vannie is not a worrier, some others of us are, so we can’t forget Matthew 6, verses 27 and 34 which simply state:
“Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Hello?!!!
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
Piece of cake, Vannie! You can do this!
Margee chose loving because she wants to look for opportunities to love others. This is already a gift of hers, so I believe she’ll become a pro at this!
My John chose purposeful, especially with regard to his faith. We all agreed we’ve seen him be bolder and more compassionate already this past year. You go, Hubster.
One of his favorite verses is 1 Thessalonians 4:11-12. He lives this out. It would behoove us all to pray thru’ this:
“Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands, just as we told you, so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders and so that you will not be dependent on anybody.”(NIV)
Jesus’ words are icing on the cake for being purposeful in Mark 16:15 –
I had trouble coming up with one word. Thankfully the sibs helped me out. First, I like the phrase be intentional. Second, I love the word peace.
Then we all agreed the answer arrives if you make an equation out of these:
Being intentional + being peaceful = a trustworthy soul
Therefore, my word is trust. I want to trust in the Lord more and worry about the world less in the most intentional way. (Nineteen words?!!!)
The first verse that popped in my head was one I bet you all know well:
Psalm 28:7 is a new favorite:
Notice “heart” is in the above twice!
Finally, Psalm 56: 3 should also be in our arsenal: “Even when I’m afraid I will trust in you.”
How blessed my in-laws are as well as each of us Hoaglands that we are all living in Louisville. Growing up an only child, it’s sheer joy for me to see so many siblings carrying on and more importantly, getting along.
Marte and Joe and I crack up when the four sibs start telling stories on each other. Many times we’ll say, “You did WHAT???”
God is good. He gave us another gift this New Year’s Eve. Relish in the moment, be brave, and choose a word!
Please leave a comment and tell me and all our readers your word!
‘Til next time!