building blocksBuild

That is my One Word for 2016.  I want to be a builder.

Build, as a verb, requires action. It forces me to do something. To Build is to establish, increase or strengthen. Yes, yes and yes. It is constructive rather than destructive.

My first construction site in need of some renovation is my tongue. I want to build up others with encouraging and loving words. I want to heed my mother’s wise advice, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” (My daughters heard that more than once growing up too.) Too often I use my words to tear down and criticize. Pause before speaking. Think and consider, “Will these words build up or tear down?” I don’t have all the answers, so why do I speak to others like I do?

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

Ephesians 4:29

Are my conversations construction zones or demolition areas?   Is there cement or dynamite in use? Cement adheres; dynamite destroys. IMG_6467IMG_6465

Besides speaking more kind words, I want to use the tools on my tool belt to write more thoughtful notes, offer more helpful hands, give more loving hugs, and simply smile more. 🙂 Even when a smiley face is not offered in return.

My second site in need of repair is in my relationships; I want to build stronger and deeper ones. I want to know God, my husband, my family, and my sponsored children better. All these relationships need some work and I am the foreman for the job. No hammer or nails needed; instead lots of time, effort and intentionality.

I want to go deeper with God; to approach humbly with open ears and a closed mouth more. May my “quiet time” reflect that I am truly actively listening.

I don’t need a tape measure to prove that I am coming up short in some my family relationships. I have known my husband since he walked into my 8th grade  science class in 1974. But there is more to learn and understand about him. I have only scratched the surface even after 32 years of marriage.

I want my 2016 blueprints to show that I purposefully will spend more time with all my family members; not use distance, driving and schedules as excuses.

I want to write, write, write to my sponsored Compassion children and my correspondent children. I want to ask better questions and pray seriously and persistently for each concern they share. Frequent communication  and creatively employing outside-the-box ideas will build these relationships and speak clearly the message of how precious and loved they are.

I’ve got some work to do. Building takes effort and time and some sweat. But I have an extra day (366) this New Year to start hammering away on these building improvements and I am pumped!

legos

What is your One Word for 2016? One Word that you will revisit throughout the year? One Word that will keep you focused when the world-fog settles in around you? Think ahead to March 16 and June 21 and September 7.  What is the One Word that will guide you back to where you want to be?

In this world of noise overload, pause a moment to sift through the mumble-jumble and find the  golden-nugget of One Word that God has just for you in 2016.  A long list of resolutions tends to depress me and weigh me down. Just too much to get my mind wrapped around. And when I can’t live up to my own expectations, I get in a funk and eat way too much junk (that rhymes).

So let’s keep it simple. One Word. I would love to hear your ONE WORD. IMG_6468

Please shout so I can hear you over all the building noise!