In recent years I have begun choosing a word to be my theme for the year. Actually, I try really hard not to choose the word myself, but rather I ask God to reveal a word to me ~ an area in which He would like to see me grow.
I've never had God answer me audibly, but I do think He has given me the words over the past four years. As I look back I can see how the words seem to be building on each other. In conversation with a friend today, she compared it to a wall that God is building ~ a wall that will hopefully remain long after we've left this life. And these words are the bricks used in that wall.
The first year I did this I felt a bit cheesy choosing the word LOVE, but it also seemed like a good starting point. The next year my word was QUIET and almost immediately I came across Zephaniah 3:17 and learned that God would quiet me with his love. This past year my word was LISTEN. It took me a while to realize that listen has the same letters as silent....I felt reassured that God would quiet me with his love so that I could be silent and listen.
A couple months ago I really felt the desire to slow down. I get so tired of rushing around, living life like it's an emergency, reading through books just to finish them, always asking my kids to hurry up...you get the idea.
It became clear to me that my word for 2013 needed to be SLOW. It occurred to me that it might be more spiritual sounding to choose still (as in Be still and know I am God), but as I thought about the word slow, it seemed more appropriate. I do need to slow down. I certainly didn't master the word listen, so I'm hoping that as I slow down this year, I will fine tune my listening.
I want to be able to enjoy each moment ~ even the mundane ones ~ possibly even the hard ones. I want to savor each bite I eat, each book I read, each hug I receive.
I want to slow down.
I'm only 3 days into the new year, but I already notice a difference. I actually feel like my days are bigger. Yesterday I didn't everything done I wanted to get done before we had to leave the house, but I took a deep breath and did as much as time allowed. You know what? I had plenty of time to finish what needed finishing when we got home. Cooking dinner was even enjoyable because I tried to enjoy it - not just get it done.
So that's my first area of being intentional this year....I'm putting on the brakes and slowing down.