For a long time I was turned off by the idea of choosing a word for the new year. Probably because it struck me as faddish and cliché. At the end of 2014, though, my pastor encouraged our church to choose a word that would represent an area of focus and growth in the coming months. Reluctantly I prayed for one, and now I understand the hype. It really is fun! And although perfection in life is impossible, direction is crucial. That’s what one simple word (or phrase or verse, if you like!) can bring.
My word for 2016 is BUILD. It was decided at the very end of December in the middle of the night. My son had had an accident in his bed, so after taking him to the bathroom, washing him off, changing his clothes, and replacing the sheets, I was wide awake. Of course I did what any normal mamma in this situation would do- I scrolled through my newsfeed! Only this time, I came across a gem of an article from Club31Women. In a nutshell, the author highlighted this verse:
“A wise woman builds her home, but a foolish woman
tears it down with her own hands.” Proverbs 14:1
I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve done my fair share of tearing down over the past 7 ½ years of marriage and 4 ½ years of parenting. Harsh words, impatience, prioritizing tasks over relationship…the list could go on. If not for the forgiveness and help of God, my family and I would surely be a wreck. But this year I choose to focus on building. Building my home into a place of comfort and peace. A place where my husband and children are free to make mistakes and be loved anyway. An assurance that I’m their advocate and not their adversary. A place where we can all find rest and renewal, encouragement and a gentle answer.
Building a home, as opposed to tearing it down, is the natural result of wisdom. A wise woman builds her home. So the question becomes: how do we “get” wisdom?
If you’re like me and long to build a home for your family, here’s the way to wisdom according to scripture:
- Desire. You’ve got to want it. Proverbs 2:3-6 says, “and if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as a hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. For the Lord gives wisdom, and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.”
- Ask. Solomon, one of the wisest men to ever live, simply asked. So did David. And James makes it really clear in James 1:5 when he says, “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” Simplest prayer ever: Lord, give me wisdom.
- Seek. This is a natural result of desire. If I want a piece of chocolate, you better believe I’m going to find one! But let me make a very practical point. If all Scripture is God-breathed (2 Tim. 3:16), and wisdom comes from God’s mouth (Prov. 2:6), then it only makes sense that we should seek God’s wisdom from the Word of God. If you desire wisdom, look for it in the Bible. This may sound much too simple for all the intellectuals and philosophers out there, but examine the fruit. Put the Word into action in your life and see if you aren’t blessed!
- Get to know Jesus. This is the most important point of all. Jesus is the wisdom of God. He is the Truth. “In him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3).
I’d love to hear your word for 2016!