My One Word for 2024

by | Jan 5, 2024 | Blog

Are you a member of the One Word movement? It replaces New Year’s resolutions with a thoughtfully chosen word for the new year. I have used this approach for several years. Last year my one word was Listen. This year, I picked Chosen and I’ll tell you why.

My morning appointments with God in December consisted of reading Paul’s letter to the Ephesians. My attention focused on verse four in chapter one: “Just as [God] chose us in [Christ Jesus] before the foundation of the world, that we might be holy and blameless before [God].” [1]

I have read this verse numerous times since trusting in Jesus Christ for my salvation in 1970. My response to the good news on that August day at K. I. Sawyer Air Force Base turned out to be evidence God chose me long, long before I ever heard the good news. Christ forgave my sins, made me a child of God (adopted into his spiritual family, verse 5), and initiated me into the transformative process to make me holy and blameless in God’s sight. The short and simple transaction in 1970 introduced me to the long and arduous transformative process of becoming holy and blameless. People know the process isn’t completed in me yet.

The joy of being forgiven and made a child of God is easily overshadowed numerous times by the struggles of trusting and obeying Jesus Christ. My one word ‘Chosen’ started to restore the marvel, gratitude, and joy of what God did long, long ago, has been doing since 1970, and will continue to do until the day I stand before God.

Try to enter into my marvel when I reflected on God choosing me before he made the world. God thought of me, and you, before I existed or the world existed. God thinks, plans, and implements his plans. God planned good for us in eternity past. I marvel at this because we possess finite minds. Even though we cannot understand the full extent of God’s thinking of us for good, I found gratitude welling up in me. I say to God, “Thank you, Father, for thinking of me for good before I ever thought of you.” This helps me think well of God in the struggles of life. Marvel led to gratitude. Gratitude leads to joy. Joy leads to sharing with others. Sharing produces more joy, encouragement, and hope for more people. God choosing me means I can choose to share with others in 2024.

God choosing us in Christ Jesus took place before we did anything good or sinful. I wrote a poem in 2004 titled, “You Loved Me First.” I noticed the words ‘chose’ and ‘loved’ are interchangeable in the first stanza:

You loved [chose] me first
Before I ever knew you.
You loved [chose] me first
Before I ever loved [chose] you
You loved [chose] me first
Before I gave you my all.

God’s choosing is motivated by love. God chose people before they ever knew of his love. God chose people before they took their first breath. God chose me out of his good please to lavish love upon me despite my sinfulness. In 1970, I confessed my sins to God and asked for forgiveness, and still daily confess my sins and ask for forgiveness. I don’t deserve God’s choosing, forgiveness, or transformation. They are God’s gifts to all who turn in repentance and trust in Christ who died on the cross and was raised from the dead to save us.

God, in eternity past, saw our spiritual need created by sin. God, in his free will, determined to implement his rescue plan through his Son Jesus Christ who came to seek and save the lost. God chose me in Christ before creating the world and reconciled me to himself in Christ after he made the world. Chosen is my marvelous word for 2024. If you use the One Word plan, what is your Word for 2024, and why?

[1] I have replaced pronouns with nouns and names to identify who I s referred to in the text.





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