I’m not much for following trends. For several years now, I’ve seen friends and strangers choose a word at the beginning of each year that will define or act as a theme for their year. Last week on social media, I noticed several people sharing their word for the year and asking others for their one particular word. So the trend is still alive.
I don’t think a single word can define me for an entire year, but maybe I’ve been looking at it all wrong and should instead think of it as a word that could inspire and challenge me through the year ahead.
On my last day in Raleigh in 2014, I walked through a downtown neighborhood and snapped photos with my cell phone to help me remember that rapidly changing corner of the city. I came across a house whose owner wanted to inspire passersby:
This photo and its message stayed with me through 2015, and when I was back in Raleigh over Christmas, my sweet husband drove me by this house. (Dear homeowner: I promise I’m not a stalker.) The word and the cross had swapped places but still sat in the window beckoning to the world outside.
The word create resonates with me because God has called me to create. My intention for the year is to put words to paper and give voice to those who might not otherwise speak their stories. Creating my next book should take up the largest portion of my time in the days and weeks and months ahead, and when, inevitably, I need extra encouragement to sit and work on the project, I’ll turn to this photo (maybe you’ll bookmark it, too?). Its entreaty may be just the thing to get me writing again on those days I feel stuck or distracted or downright lazy.
I’ll create here on the blog, too, bringing you thoughts and pictures of life as the flourishing tree. I’m sure there will be other ways I’ll create: art projects and kitchen messes and a comfortable home and who knows what other projects waiting for my attention.
What do you think? Would this sign in a stranger’s window inspire you? What do you hope to create in the year ahead?