Change – The One Word for the New Year I’m Resisting


By faith Abraham obeyed…not knowing where he was going. Hebrews 11:8

We sat around the living room, all cozy, in pjs and comfy sweats and sweaters, fire blazing. New Years Day 2013. We’ve been gathering like this for many years. Such a blessing to share a new year with those you love and take a moment to reflect on what’s ahead.

I came across the One Word for the New Year concept last year. For me, this has been a powerful concept. I pray over the course of a couple of weeks, asking God to give me His one word for me for the New Year. I figure He knows me, He knows what’s coming, He’s my guide. 

Yet, as we gathered and started sharing, I chose to go last. My word just wasn’t coming to me. Serve…Intentional…Purpose…Hmmmmm. What’ll it be? 

I sat listening to everyone else’s words—Current, Finish, Motivate, Honoring, Marry, Choose, Courage, Breathe, Vivid. Such great words. I wanted to steal them, but at the same time, I wanted my own word! “Lord?” 

And then it pierced my thoughts, sharply, clear and certain, “Change.” I nearly burst into tears. Because I knew this was a word I had considered, but dismissed. I don’t like the word. Well it’s not actually the word I don’t like. It’s the reality. I love routine and I’m resistant to change.

I explained my word, as I choked back the tears of recognition. The year ahead will bring many changes. One change will be the biggest since I birthed my first baby (miracle) almost 25 years ago. My youngest baby, in all her almost six feet, bright-red, curly headed 18-year-old glory, will leave for college in the Fall of 2013. 

This will be a huge, almost unbearable change. All those years of active mothering, over? How can this be? What will I do? Who will I be? 

And what about Chris and me? I’m so thankful for our 28 years. He’s my best friend. But just the two of us? Living together alone in a home echoing with the memory of sounds of scraped knees, voices singing, sibling spats, “Happy Birthday,” “Good night,” “Bye, Mom…Love you!”

Oh I know…

“The only constant is change.” “Change is good.” Oh, and here’s a convicting one, “When you are through changing, you are through.”

I know I will go on. There will be many other changes, good and bad, exciting and difficult, inevitable and surprising. Changing job opportunities, friendships, family dynamics. I will do my best to welcome change, adjust to change, entrust change to God. 

And as I stretch and grow and gain and lose through the change ahead this year, I will carry this thought regarding my four beloved daughters, “Because I knew you, I have been changed for good.” (For Good – Wicked, Stephen Schwartz)

What’s Your Story?

Have you chosen a New Word for the New Year? Maybe you’ve come up with another way to mark the New Year. I’d love to hear…

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Elise Daly Parker has been married for 28 years and is mom to four mostly grown girls. She is a writer, editor, writing coach, and blogger. She believes we all have stories that matter--big life bios and small meaningful moments. Elise believes our stories are a reflection of God’s glory and are meant to be shared. They have the power to inform, reform, and transform. She loves God, family, friends...and really likes travel!

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