2016: The Year of Daring

My word for 2015 was “Dream.” You can read about that here, but the general explanation is that I thought the word was a noun, that 2015 would be a year about dreams. In a way, it was, but as I sit here at the end of December, I believe the word was always meant to be a verb.
It was a year when I learned to dream again.
It was a year of learning to let go of old dreams, to take my claws out and let them
breathe, change shape, grow.
Sometimes, one theme flows naturally into another, and this is one of those times.
My word for 2016 is “Daring.”
Daring to dream?
But also daring to act. Daring to try. Daring to ask. Daring to speak. Daring to believe.
I love having a theme for the year. It works as a lens. When things are hard, I hold up my lens and ask myself what lesson I am learning. I’ve been doing this for a decade now. Unlike the resolutions I used to make, my theme is never abandoned.
It isn’t something I can fail at.
It is a window or a mirror.
It is a shovel, a pencil, a paintbrush, a hammer.
It’s whatever I need it to be, whatever tool is most useful at the time.
I have never once regretted asking God for a theme for the new year, even though some years it is hard hard hard and I wish my theme had been easier.
In 2005, I declared it my year of FREEDOM. It was a scary year of learning all of the ways in which I was not free and fighting against those chains. in 2006, my word was CONTENTMENT and I became very aware of the greed inside my soul. I had to face myself.
2007 was PURPOSE AND VISION and mostly I learned what my purpose wasn’t and that my vision for my own life was cloudy. 2008 was all about LAUGHTER AND POSSIBILITIES and it was a great year. It was also a hard year, but as we moved away from friends and the familiar, I was reminded to look for the possible. 2009 was PATIENCE, and I needed lots of it.
2010 was TRUST, which followed PATIENCE well, because when your patience appears to not be paying off, you really have to trust. 2011 was PEACE and 2012 was my year of MARY.
After Mary, it made sense that 2013 was my RED LETTER YEAR. I focused heavily on what Jesus actually called us to, the words he actually spoke. My faith was shifting in small ways, and I needed to hold onto the one thing I was sure of.
Then, in 2014, my theme was OBLATION, and that almost shattered me. When you set out to pursue devotion, you learn where you are not devoted and you realize there are some aspects of the faith you once embraced blindly that you cannot be devoted to anymore.
And so it was time to DREAM again.
And now, it’s time to be DARING.
I’m looking forward to 2016.

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