My One Word for 2016

For the past few years I’ve waited expectantly each January to found out Andy Wood’s “My One Word.” Instead of New Year’s resolutions (which, let’s face it, don’t usually last past January—or, for me, past the first week in January), Andy focuses on one word. This word is based on what direction he senses the Lord is leading him during the coming year. Past words have included finish, lean, one, and advance. Check out if you’re interested in learning more about “My One Word” and Andy’s word for 2015. (I highly recommend subscribing to this blog. It will bless and enrich your life. I promise. This writer is amazing.)

I’ve thought about this before, but (honestly) I can’t remember my word for last year. Or the year before. I have no doubt it’s because I (1) didn’t take it seriously; (2) didn’t write it down; (3) had zero accountability.

I hope this year will be different. I plan for this year to be different.

Somewhere around November a particular word kept occurring to me. It would just pop up here and there, but I didn’t think about the word-for-the-year thing. Then a few Sundays ago, a lay leader host mentioned that she chooses a word for each year. Her word for 2016 is intentional. And that word immediately popped into my head again. I thought about Andy, and then got his “My One Word” post. His word is RENEW.

Andy’s words are always right on point, and I’m always tempted to just agree and claim his word for my own. But not this year. This year I have my own word, and I hope it will guide me, encourage me, remind me of what’s important.


The word resonates deeply with me … to prosper, to flourish … to grow or develop vigorously. I love some of the synonyms … burgeon … bloom … blossom.

It’s something that can be applied to every bit of my life—emotional, relational, professional, vocational … and, most definitely, spiritual. After all …

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. (John 10:10 NKJV)

One of Google’s definition of “life” reads, “… including the capacity for growth, reproduction, functional activity, and continual change preceding death.”

And so, built into this body of mine, is the capacity for growth, to engage in functional activity, and to be changing continually until I breathe my last.

That’s exactly what I want to do. Grow in my writing, grow in my marriage, grow in my friendships … grow in my relationship with God. And not just grow … THRIVE.

I don’t just want to survive.

I want to thrive.

I don’t want to strive … just thrive.

I have to admit I’m not exactly sure how to go about this. Perhaps I have to figure out how to water myself, give myself nutrients, sit in the Sonshine, and breathe. More reading, more writing, more prayer …

As Tony Robbins says, “There are only two options: make progress or make excuses.”

I’m tired of making excuses (and I’ve made a LOT). So, this year, I’m shooting for progress. In whatever form that takes.

So … what’s YOUR word for 2016? 

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us … (Ephesians 3:20 NKJV)






My One Word for 2016 — 8 Comments

  1. Thank you, as always for your encouragement. I’ll check out that Casting Crowns song.It sounds like it should be my theme song for the year.

  2. I’m always in favor of making up my own words when I can’t get my hands on an established word. I wish I were as “laser-focused” as you!

  3. I’m with you girl. This really touched my heart. My words will be “press on.” Too often I make excuses and do not press on. We will be victorious together.

  4. Once I start a project, I’m usually laser-focused at following it through to completion, however,
    getting started is what I struggle with, so…

    MY word for 2016 is: “Unprocrastinate”

  5. Have you heard the song “Thrive,” by Casting Crowns, which came out last year? Another good song by one of my favorite artists.

    “…It’s time for us to more than just survive, we were made to thrive…”

    I hope this year will be different for you too, E.
    Keep up the good work, you are a wonderful writer!