This past first day of 2018, I sat with my freshly brewed coffee, open Bible, and journal pondering the year and pages before me. I had already reconciled the fact that I felt no specific nudging toward a new word for 2018- I was ready to continue walking with my One Word for 2017 (Light) into this new year. I also realized I was enjoying following the current scripture reading plan I was following, so no need to change that either.
If you are wondering about that reading plan, I am following the daily readings from my Sacred Ordinary Days Liturgical Planner – It took me a while find my rhythm so though I am still learning about the church calendar and historical relevance I find it has blessed my daily quiet time and supported my writing goals and focus perfectly.
That might lead one to wonder what my writing goals are…well, in brief, my next BIG project does involve the liturgical calendar. I have a number of other projects in varying stages of development, but this one will be my heart! Those of you who follow me for my Poetry and Devotional writing, this one will be for you! I know as I have opened the doors to include my planner passion here on the blog some of you may have felt left in the dust. Trust me I have been working behind the scenes on improving my craft…and hope that it will emerge soon. Soon, being about a year…depending which direction I go. Indie or otherwise. I covet your prayers! Above all, I trust in the One who inspires me to write and share my writing. May the words of my mouth, (pen and keys) and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to God and useful in bringing glory to His name and encouragement to His people. Amen.
Which brings me to the major epiphany I am longing to share…my One Word 365.
Back to that coffee and Bible, I mentioned. I was bringing all of the goings on of my meandering mind before the Lord, and a thought just popped into my head. Not the kind that is like, BAM! It was more of a sauntering in, and sitting with you kind of moment. As if it just pulled up its own chair sat beside me.
That walking-in thought looked like this…
well, it’s been a year of walking in the light, with the Light. Here it is the first day of the New Year. No word…
I pray– saying,
I am OK with it, Lord. It’s good.
I open up that liturgical planner to the date to read, and I notice the first day of the year is noted as the Holy Name of Jesus / New Year’s Day. My mind and prayer conversation begin to include this note… and I start to ponder The Name above all Names. I am wondering why the One who was the Word that became flesh and dwelt among us, couldn’t be my word, how He IS the Word- wouldn’t that just make the most sense, I wonder…and I begin to meditate on the scripture and as I do, I feel an incredible joy in my heart, as if the light switch turned not on but up…from bright to brighter and brightest! Why not? YES! Yes, to Jesus…the One who is the ultimate YES!
Two songs come to my mind during this time. Because He Lives and the words Nothing But The Name of Jesus. Which I realize is in reality – after a hymnal check- Nothing But The Blood of Jesus. Which led me to praise Him for the blood He shed at Calvery for me…for you…for US! Because His Name is made powerful in us because of the blood.
I start to contemplate the Name and the Blood. The blood gives the Name the power and the Name’s purpose is fulfilled in the blood…it was His sacrifice, His blood that ushered in the newness of life that is possible – the blood that saves, cleanses and the Name that frees and empowers.
It was His name that made the offering acceptable to God…that Wonderful Name. The blood of Jesus and the name of Jesus are synonymous. For without the Name of Jesus- God’s One and Only Son, the perfect sacrificial Lamb, there is no atonement for sin. Without the blood that was shed…an acceptable offering we would have no way to be reconciled to God. We would be left in our own righteousness, which is as filthy rags. Instead, because of Jesus, we are brought near to God… cleansed, through the blood of the Lamb who was slain for our sins.
We get HIS righteousness in exchange for our filthy rags…He got the Cross. It’s mindboggling! It’s amazing. Grace is earth-shattering, mind-blowing, and incomprehensible. There is nothing ordinary about the Name of Jesus.
Not this Jesus, the One who was and is and is to come. This One who never changes, and is not hindered by the limitations of men, not contained in full in any denomination.
What we have in Jesus is a King, unlike any other King. A Lord above all Lords. A Savior that saves to the uttermost. There is nowhere you can go to escape His Love…it will pursue you relentlessly, and when you finally receive it and know it, you will regret the time you spent your life devoted to the pursuit of anything else! You, the pursued one will become the pursuer…His everlasting arms beneath and Banner of Love above. Forevermore. Pretty much the happiest ever after anyone could hope for…and so much more.
So, yeah…I am going with Jesus for the win. I am leaning in close, and pursuing my beloved. I am taking no prisoners, but I hope to set a few captives free. My One Word this year, is The Word…Jesus. I’m feeling pretty good about it. I am confident He’s good with it, too.
Of course, a little poem to celebrate and kick off the New Year :
My arrow and aim
are one and the same,
by the power of His blood
I am saved in His name!
Jesus My Lord, Savior, and King,
All wisdom is yours
true freedom you bring.
Hey, if you stuck around and read to the end, you deserve a reward! I know I went on more than I planned. Thanks for reading and I hope my words have encouraged you in some way tonight.
I’m hoping to share my lessons and conclusions with my One Word from 2017 shortly!
Have you chosen a word, made a resolution or two?
I’d love to know, share with me, below! Ha…I am on a poetic roll.