My Word for 2017

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Happy New Year 2017!
I never seem to be able to keep up the momentum when I make New Year’s resolutions. There are always so many things I want to accomplish and so many areas of my life that I want to make better all it once. It is easy to fall off the wagon early on and get discouraged until a new year rolls around again.
I don’t know about you, but I am tired of this cycle of discouragement.
So this year I am doing something a bit different. I have chosen one word and a Scripture to be my focus for 2017.
My word is…
DISCIPLINE
When I looked at what my personal goals are for the year, I saw a definite need for more self-discipline in my life. Things like committing to getting up earlier in the morning to spend time with the Lord, finding ways to save more money, eating healthier meals, exercising more regularly, being more diligent with my homemaking, and learning to play violin are all going to take an extra measure of discipline on my part.
When I think about this kind of discipline, I think of having self control, exercising healthy restraint, developing good habits, practicing delayed gratification, and persevering through tough times.
To go along with my word for the year, I have also chosen an encouraging Scripture to keep in mind along the way.
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14
In other words, Paul (the author of this Scripture) recognized that he still had a lot of room for growth in his life. But rather than dwell on his failures and shortcomings or get overwhelmed with trying to do everything at once, Paul determines that he will do just one thing. He will forget the mistakes of the past and embrace the future with it’s brand new opportunities to become a better man and a better follower of Christ. He makes up his mind to simply focus on pressing forward.
I’m a lot like Paul in this case. I can look back at this year, and I definitely see so much that I want to change. I need to improve in so many areas. But I will take Paul’s advice to simply focus on one thing.
There are many Scriptures that speak about discipline and self control. The Bible tells Christians to deny themselves, take up their crosses, and follow Jesus. I’m looking forward to spending time alone with the Lord this year finding these Scriptures and taking a fresh look at how I can apply them practically in my daily life.
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How about you? Do you make New Year’s Resolutions or set yearly goals? How do you stay focused past the first week of January? If you could just pick one word or one thing to focus on for this year, what would it be? Leave a comment below!

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