My word for 2013 – Grace

It has been quiet around here. We went out of town for Christmas. I was sick the whole time and am while I am feeling better am still not up to 100%. I have been doing a lot of thinking. And praying. Feeling distant from God and His love but desperately searching for it all the same. Suddenly a new year looms and I feel that I am a completely different person than I was a year ago in the most unexpected of ways. I am still trying to figure out who this person is.

Before Christmas I went through a few days of deep guilt and despair. A kind and wise friend told me that one day as she was praying for me it occurred to her that this process – the aftermath of our decision- was intended for me to come to understand God’s unconditional love in a very real way. She was praying for me to feel God’s love, to know who I am as His daughter, regardless of what I did or didn’t do.

At this time of year many bloggers I read choose a word for the year. They choose it to put some vision on the year to come. I have never picked a word. But in the past few days as I have thought and prayed the word “Grace” has kept coming into my head. I am truly on a quest to discover what God’s grace is for me. I want to learn to rest secure in His grace and love no matter what my circumstance. I want to pursue this. I want to feel this.

– favor or goodwill. Synonyms: kindness, kindliness, love, benignity; condescension.

– a manifestation of favor, especially by a superior.  Synonyms: forgiveness, charity, mercifulness.

– mercy; clemency; pardon.  Synonyms: lenity, leniency, reprieve.

This morning I was thinking through some kind of Bible reading/devotional time that a friend and I had agreed to do together. We haven’t decided on anything because I am wary of reading something that will turn into legalism for me. I don’t need to read right now about how to give more, or be more radical, or how to be better, or how I should do more. I need to bathe in grace. It was suggested that we read the book of John. That sounded like a good place to start.

So for now I am going to read the book of John in the ESV and the Message. I am going to try and apply what I read through three simple steps: 1. I confess…repentance
2. I count…blessings
3. I claim…verse from the reading

I am also going to jump back into The Joy Dare with Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience. I used to keep my list of gifts but kind of let it slide lately. How better to see God’s love for me than to take up the practice of listing my gifts again?

So I am stumbling into the new year. Not sure who I am. Aching to find out more of who God is. Longing to experience grace. Waiting still and quiet.

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