One Word 2014

Frozen landscape - ShelliBourque

For several years I have chosen one word on which to focus for an entire year. This word becomes a constant companion in the back of my mind, pressing me to move forward, challenging me to take steps of faith or to grasp hold of a promise of God, and even giving me courage to make hard decisions. In past years my one word has been Satisfied, Reach, and Faithful.

As 2013 and my year of seeking to be faithful came to a close I could not ignore the nagging feeling that I never allowed faithfulness to touch one area of my life. It begged for attention, gnawing at the recesses of my mind. I rationalized and made excuses, yet it would not let me be. So as the new year opens up before me, I know that I must submit to it, facing it head on by making it my one word for 2014.

It’s not a romantic word. It’s not a fun word. It’s full of grit, determination, and sheer obedience. It’s become a 4-letter word in our society whose counter-biblical message is gaining a strong foothold in a godless generation. Unwittingly, I have allowed this message to creep into my own life and it’s time to make it stop.

It is not a word I want. But it is the word I most need to speak to myself, to be held accountable for, and to pursue.

Work - One Word 2014 - ShelliBourque

As my one word for 2014 I have chosen to bring redemption within my own life to the God-given gift of  work.

The gift of work? Yes, and the fact that I haven’t regarded work as a gift is the very reason I must choose to focus on it so that my mind may be renewed by truth.

If I am going to redeem work in my life I must view work as a gift from God.

Here is what I have seen to be good: it is appropriate to eat, drink, and experience good in all the labor one does under the sun during the few days of his life God has given him, because that is his reward. God has also given riches and wealth to every man, and He has allowed him to enjoy them, take his reward, and rejoice in his labor. This is a gift of God,  for he does not often consider the days of his life because God keeps him occupied with the joy of his heart. [Ecclesiastes 5:18-20 HCSB, emphasis mine]

Since the Garden, even before the Fall, man was made to work (Genesis 2:15). Work gives our lives purpose and fulfillment, it is a means to provide for our families, it allows us to glorify God by utilizing the gifts and talents He has bestowed in each of us, and it is a means by which we may serve others. Work is indeed a gift.

In my initial studies I have found there is so much more to work than I can address at one time, so I will return to this one word throughout the year and share what I am learning and how I am growing. Would you join me?

Do you view work as a gift, or like me, do you need to face work as a 4-letter word head on?

Have you chosen one word for 2014? If so, I’d love to hear it and to cheer you on this year.


About Shelli Bourque

An ordinary girl living by the grace of life in Christ. Adoring wife and mom. Lover of quiet places and uncluttered spaces. Beauty seeker and image maker.