Last month I wrote about choosing one word to help guide your life and your year. This time I’m writing about choosing a verse or bible passage to help guide your year.
One Word was about allowing God to use that word to work through you. That chosen word helps to transform, heal, inspire, and encourage you to move through the year in alignment with God’s will for your life. This word becomes a sacred echo in your life. This echo is described by Margaret Feinberg in her interview with CBN , “..but since then I’ve grown in my prayer life and relationship with God. And I’ve been discovering that when God speaks he often speaks more as an echo than a whisper. He’ll say the same thing again and again. When I listen for the echo I walk more fully into all that He has for me. I felt like this was a message that others needed to hear and the response has been overwhelming.”
“When God really wants to get your attention, He doesn’t just say something once. He echoes. The same scripture, idea, or theme will reappear until you can’t help but wonder if a greater something, or Someone, is at work (Beliefnet, 09/2008)”.
Yes, God is a god of repetition. He knows that humans are not likely to notice the first time or even listen for that matter.
We can only notice those sacred echoes when we slow down and intentionally take time to notice themes and patterns that appear in our daily lives. We can do this through various forms of prayer, biblical meditation, journaling, and conversations with others.
When you notice repetition in your life, stop and ask God what it is that he wants you to hear. What is happening in your life that needs your attention, your prayers, your time? Those sacred echoes don’t necessarily need to be about negative things. God also communicates pleasant messages to us. Sometimes God is simply saying, “Good Job. Great. Keep Going. I hear you. I’m here. I’m with you.” He might be drawing you to discover new interests or new people. Don’t be afraid to find out what he is communicating to you.
Along with having one word, another spiritual tool to help guide you is having a verse to focus on for the year. Choosing a verse for the year doesn’t come at the expense of not reading the rest of the bible or neglecting to engage in bible and book studies, those are important and not partaking in those activities would be hazardous for your spiritual health and growth. Instead, your verse serves a similar purpose to your one word, it is meant to become a sacred echo in your life, a way for a specific verse to speak to you throughout the year and help you grow.
Some Helpful Steps for Choosing a Verse
In choosing a yearly verse, take some time to review various events, learning experiences, areas of growth, and some of the challenges your faced in the last year.
In your review, was there certain patterns or themes that you noticed?
If so, reach for your bible and see if there are any verses that stand out to you. Make a list of these verses, pray over them, and ask God if one of those verses is one you should focus on during the year.
Maybe there is a characteristic or value that you’d like to learn about or develop on a personal level for 2019. Again, pray about it, and if that is what you’ve chosen, start searching for verses that speak to what you’d like to learn about or cultivate in your life.
The verse becomes more meaningful if you write it out and place it in various places where you will see it. If you’d like to keep the verse private, place it in your bible, your bible study book, or in your handbag/wallet. If you are not feeling up to sharing your verse with others, it’s perfectly alright to keep it between you and God, after all this your own journey and you get to chose who is privy to all that God is revealing to you.
Memorize the verse. At most, your verse will be one to four sentences long. This is easy enough to remember, unless you have problems with memory. Take your time. It also helps to find a translation that you like. Some verse sound beautifully poetic in the KJV, others make more sense coming from the NIV. The goal is to get a good understanding of the verse and allow it to positively impact your life throughout the year.
My One Word: Quiet
My One Verse: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2
I’m not yet sure what Romans 12:2 has to do with my one word, but that verse is one that kept popping up all over the place in my life within a short period of time. I thought, o.k. God, you’re trying to tell me something specific to my own life and circumstances, so Romans 12:2 it is. This was how the sacred echo lead me to Romans 12:2. I won’t pre-determine what role the one word and verse are going to play in my life or how it is going to impact me. This is the beauty of both spiritual exercises, we leave it to God to speak to us as we encounter those words and verses. We walk alongside God as he creates those sacred echoes and we heed the life changing messages that become part of our journey through 2019.