Yearly Lessons

To copy a short explanation from my January 2018 post, God has given me a word for the year since 2011. It’s my “theme” for the year; it’s always a word that encapsulates the lessons God winds up working on with me that year.

2011 was my year of grace.

2012 was my year of hope.

2013 was my year of love.

2014 was my year of trust.

2015 was my year of faith.

2016 was my year of surrender.

2017 was my year to learn to follow (God) in a deeper way.

2018 was my year of change.

2019 – 2021 were “dark nights of the soul” years and I did not ask God for a word for the year during this time. But I started the practice again and 2022 gets two words!

2022 is my year of sacrifice and discipline.

Sacrifice: I need to sacrifice some things to attain other/better things (for example, and not limited to this, sacrificing eating the way I want to eat for eating in a much healthier way to attain better health).

“Sacrifice is a part of life. It’s supposed to be. It’s not something to regret. It’s something to aspire to.”  ―Mitch Albom

“There is no progress or accomplishment without sacrifice.” ― Idowu Koyenikan

Discipline: I need to learn to employ (better, stronger) discipline to have the life I want – the life I know God wants for me. There’s a lot encompassed here and I don’t want to get off track, so won’t elaborate now. I will probably do that with a wrap-up post at the end of the year though.

You know, it just struck me that’s what’s been missing from this. It’s not enough to put my word (or “words”) of the year out there – I also need to share what God used them to teach me after all is said and done. I will do that this year.

“Sacrifice, discipline and prayer are essential. We gain strength through God’s word. We receive grace from the sacrament. And when we fumble due to sin – and it’s gonna happen – confession puts us back on the field.” ―Lou Holtz

“Discipline begins where you are, and the key to sustaining the level of discipline you need lies in developing daily habits and routines which mirror the life you want to have.” Mensah Oteh

We’re three and a half months into 2022, but it’s like this year is just beginning for me. I feel like I’ve been hibernating (which may be one reason bears have become nearer and dearer to my heart over the past few years). But I’m slowly waking up, stretching, and rubbing the sleep from my eyes. And the future, like the spring-time sun, appears warm and bright.


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