One Word

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Guest Blogger: Amanda Crain

So, I started a devotional on my phone called “One Word that will change your life”.  Honestly I was just curious what this one word could be and it was a short 4 day plan so figured I would give it a try.  As I read the first day, I was instantly intrigued.  Then I read that it was an alternative for making New Year’s resolutions that you never achieve, so then I was hooked.  The authors describe it as a “simple discipline of developing a One Word theme for the upcoming year.  Not a phrase, not a statement, just a single word.  Discovering your One Word for the year, gives you more clarity, passion and purpose for your life.  It brings simplicity and focus.  It cuts through the distractions and keeps you focused on what really matters.”  They warn the reader to be careful in getting your One Word.  They say as soon as you discover your word, the battle will begin.  “It will initiate a process of teaching, developing, refining and molding.  God will use your word as a light and a mirror – illuminating your path and revealing things that need to change.”

Before I even finished the 4 days, I started thinking of words.  There are so many good words!  How would I ever choose just one?  Oh yeah, then I remembered that I should let the word choose me.  I stopped thinking about it for a couple days and then one night as I was trying to think of another song to sing to Luke as he asked for “one more” for the 10th time, the word “intentional” popped into my head.  Huh, that was a word I hadn’t thought of before.  I forget what song I ended up singing, but after that I started to pray about that word and what it meant.  It was perfect, and scary.  I realized that I really don’t like being intentional, especially in places that are already outside my comfort zone.  My tendency is to coast through the day and I probably miss a lot of opportunities to glorify God and witness to others.  “Intentional” takes work and effort and can set you up for failure.  Now I see why they said to be careful!!

I also started becoming more aware of areas where I already try to be intentional.  When I pray with my boys, I make it personal, specific and relevant to what happened that day and always try to balance the prayer with adoration, thankfulness and then requests at the end.  When I sing songs to my boys, I try to pick worship songs that relate to challenges they may be facing.  I try to be intentional with my husband in telling him thank you for specific things he does. These are just small examples.  The true test is changing my behavior…  God is all about life change.  I have an opportunity coming up to be “intentional” outside my comfort zone at one of Jonah’s classmate’s birthday parties.  I’ll be alone (I can’t make Nate do the talking), at their house (so no where to hide) and I won’t know ANYBODY there.  This will be a test, but I’m excited, sort of…

I’m sure there will be many failures and successes but I’ve made sure to share my word with my “Stretch Team” as they call it.  Even that is being more intentional, by actually sharing my word and asking for accountability, encouragement and help to stretch and grow.  I also give anyone reading this permission to ask me about my One Word and not let me quickly reply with just a one word answer!

I encourage you to find the devotional on the YouVersion Bible App or go to to get more details.

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  1. Rick Thiessen

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