This is the third year that I have thrown all New Year’s Resolutions out the window and replaced it with a “one word” focus. Some people choose a word to help set goals for the year. Sometimes the word chooses you. My words have always chosen me. I feel they reflected what the LORD was actively doing in my heart or wanted to teach me.
The first year was 2013. My word was “transition”. I was learning about how to honor the season I find myself in. I was transitioning from a mom of babies to a mom of preschool/school aged kids. I also transitioned from managing a blog with seven writers to writing my own blog for myself.
Last year was “blessed”. I learned to count my blessings and that I am blessed to be a blessing to others. This is how I learned to appreciate The Small Life.
Now as we begin 2015, once again a word has chosen me. The word is “yield”.
I really don’t like that word! For one, it is not a beautiful word. There are much more beautiful words to chose from. Even some of the synonyms seem to conjure more pleasant connotations. But that is just it…I have to yield to control…to perfection…to beauty…to order. Also, to yield is a counter-cultural concept. We are taught that we are to look out for ourselves and to be the master of our own destinies…that our success is determined by the dreams we plan and how well we execute those plans…that we are not to yield to anything that may get in the way of those plans.
The LORD is asking me to surrender..to relinquish my plans…to abandon my own sense of security.
Most importantly to yield to His authority…
For someone who is so strong-willed, this is my greatest struggle.
I spent the entire year last year confirming my call to ministry. I know beyond the shadow of doubt that I am called to minister to women. I was able to do that through this blog, the podcast, and leading a weekly Bible Study. Then out of the blue God made it VERY clear that I needed to take an opportunity that He presented and return to my profession. After being a stay-at-home-mom for 6 and 1/2 years, I was thrust back into a classroom mid-year. No one with kingdom eyes ever doubt that public school teachers are ministers despite their inability to share their faith. And guess what? My job is to teach the MOTHERS of elementary school students! God is so strategic to use individual giftings and passions for His glory!
Even though this is a perfect position for me and my skill set, it is not what I had envisioned! I am learning to yield.
In this yielding season, I am having to yield to others as well. I am having to let go of the Bible Study and allow someone else to step-up in leadership. I am having to let go of the podcast. I am having to let go of my vision for this blog, and let it be what I can give to it…to trust that God will bless it and use it as He choses.
One sneaking suspicion to why “yield” is my word is because the Father wants to teach me multiple meanings that the synonyms like surrender and relinquish don’t carry.
Sometimes “yield” means to pause…to slow down. My tendency is to move full steam ahead with MY ideas, MY decisions, venting My frustrations, with My careless words…I need to pause…to slow down and consider the ramifications of MY actions before I move forward.
And then there is another meaning to the word yield. It is an agricultural term. The yield of a crop is the fruit that is produced. It is also a banking term that means to produce as return from an investment
Isn’t that just like God to be so poetic? Did you miss the irony?
I am suppose to YIELD to His authority so that I can YEILD the most fruit for His kingdom and so that I will see the YIELD of my investment…all for His glory!
“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15: 4-5
“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done.” Mathew 16:24-27
I have much to learn this year!
What about you? Do you have a “one word”?
Linking up with Holly Barrett, Kelly Balarie, Meredith Bernard, Jennifer Dukes Lee, The Weekend Brew, and Holley Gerth.
Hey Jen, I just read Meredith’s post and I love how God led you both in similar directions for your word this year. This is something I am working on as well. I tend to run ahead of God instead of waiting for this direction, and he’s showing me that sometimes it’s best to just slow down and enjoy the journey. Loved reading about your word and am excited to see what he has in store for you!
Abby, thank you for stopping by!
No, YIELD is not the most beautiful word. But it’s a challenging and unselfish one! Nice 🙂
To say it is challenging is an understatement! lol!
Hi Jen! I’m with Abby! When I read your word “Yield” I thought of Meredith’s “Surrender.” That is quite a testimony of God calling you back to the workplace. 🙂 My word is rest. Taking eough tme to be available to God and to be filled by Him, having an attitude of rest and trust while I work and serve too!
I am not good at resting at all!
My word for the year is content. I complain way too much. I need to focus on being content. Thank you for sharing about yield.
As I told Barbie, content was a word I consider but I think it would take me more than a year to explore!
I think I’m in for a long year Jennifer! 🙂
My one word for 2015 is Encouragement. I was surprised that Holley Gerth has an e-book coming out January 1 on “Becoming a Better Encourager” at http://holleygerth.com
What a great resource that with me for you and many others!
Ah. You explain it so, so well that clearly it is meant to be.
You make me smile, Gina!
Hi Jen, thank you for sharing this great post with us. I think that sometimes the best words that the Lord give us are the words that we most resist. I am focusing on patience. This is a word that no one likes, but I think God has some good things in store through it. Thank you for sharing this. Cheering you on!
Thank you for being one of my encouragers!
Happy New Year! My word for the year is “content” and I did not choose it. I know there will be some hard lessons learned as I allow God to teach me how to life a more content life.
“Content” is a word that was floating around for me for a few days but I think that would take me more than a year to learn. LOL!
I guess I’d better prepare myself for a long year!
Jen, I absolutely love this!
I absolutely love you and miss you! Thank you for praying with me during this process of confirming my calling.
Wow what a great and exciting opportunity! I love how you wrote this and all the different meanings of the word.
I have been thinking my word should be abide, and it is in the verses you included. 🙂
Abide is such a peaceful word! I love it!
I like the various uses of Yield. Who knows where this new season will take you, It may open doors that couldn’t come your way before.
Praying His will.
Thank you so much for your encouraging words on my site today. You offered me so much truth that I needed to read and think about today. I am strong-willed, too, and this year I was thrown into a full-time career in my field at a time in my life that I was not sure I was ready for it. It has been a blessing but definitely a transition for me and my family. I am soaking in the scripture that you shared in this post. Great reminder that He has a plan and it may not always match my own.
Looking forward to sharing my posts and encouragement with each other!
Yea! I finally found your blog! Google+ makes it SO hard sometimes, lol – anyway, I’m glad to be here reading about your one word. Sounds like He has some wonderful things in store for you, Jen! Wishing you a bountiful harvest, in every way, in 2015! PS My word is: new (not a fun, pretty word either) 🙂
Thank you for the 2015 blessing, June!
I just LOVE that: Yield to God to Yield a harvest! Oh! You are in for good things!!!
I hope so, Kathy!
Amazing post! Yield is such a great word.
Thank you. 🙂
Beautiful, Jen. Yield! I love that word. Ever since I found the power of the yielded heart I refuse to go back. Never understood Surrender. Yield – let one pass to lead – is all about trust. You are a People of The Yielded Heart. Key to yielding: Trust! Know! In the knowing I trusted Him, in the trusting I loved Him, in the loving I obeyed – In the obeying the adventure began! coming to you from the Weekend Brew. Blessings ~Chris~ (oh, my website is called: Whispered Words of Wisdom Captured from a YIELDED heart.) http://www.chrismalkemes.com