New Year, New Word

Here we are already arrived at the fourth day of 2023. The days flying past. I smile to think that before you know it, we’ll be right back at the Christmas holidays again. I have already made notes in December on my new calendar of gifts to buy. Loved ones birthdays are marked throughout the months of the calendar, upcoming appointments, and numerous hopes and dreams of creative endeavors.

My guiding word for all my endeavors this year is Love. I believe I stand a good chance of remembering this word the year through. We bump into love at every turn in our lives–it is life itself.

Yes, we all know that love is patient, kind, polite, joy, peace, goodness, self-control, but what brought me to the word was the well-known Mary and Martha story as told in Luke 10. This is the one where Jesus is visiting the home of his friends, the siblings Lazarus, Martha and Mary.

In this story Martha is busy and distracted as a hostess, but Mary sits at the feet of Jesus, listening to His teaching. Think of it. You know it was the women’s task to feed the men and make them welcome, and no doubt Martha had impatiently called a number of times for Mary to help. I can imagine Mary saying, “Okay, just a minute,” unable to stop listening to the Teacher. Martha (who must have been one bold woman) actually got so wrought up as to suggest to Jesus that he make Mary help her. (Imagine that!) His response was, “Mary has chosen the good portion [that which is to her advantage], which shall not be taken away from her.” (AMPC)

Mary chose that good portion out of love for the Truth, for learning of love and life.

We will do for love what no amount of willpower, pulling ourselves up by the bootstraps, haranguing from within or without can get us to do. How well I remember reading novels within my English textbook in Senior class, and I read classics, too, because I was reading for love. I didn’t so much love tearing apart the English text.

Follow the idea of love, and everything becomes easier and even eagerly done.

This year I want to identify the ‘good portions’ of my life, which is where the love lies. I want to let love help me to judge those smart ideas that strike me, and help me govern my time and energy. I want to identify the things I love, and honor them, such as writing and reading. I want to take more time to love and praise God, and enjoy His world. I want to share more with those that I love, and to pay attention to see all the love coming my way, and from places I never would have imagined. When I’m feeling wobbly at a challenge, I want to face it with love, which is always strengthening. I want to see what love has to teach me.

Now, what is your word for the year? Please share in the comments and spread inspiration.