Revolution of Love

Revolution of Love

Do small things with great love.

My 2018 Word and Saint of the Year

It’s goals week on the blog. Yesterday I shared about joining the 2018 Reading Challenge and today I’m discussing about my word and saint of the year. šŸ™‚

For the last few years on January 1, I have been choosing a word and saint of the year that I would focus on for the following twelve months. I already had a word in mind in early November but as I was praying and working through my Advent journal during Advent, my heart started moving in a completely different direction.I was reflecting on the fact that 2017 was a year of blessing for me and my family. We had previous years with pain, cancer, the death of loved ones etc but this year was all about family, road trips and making memories. I felt moved to focus on reaching out those who were struggling and going through difficult times.

This weekend Bella and I went on a weekend trip to San Francisco to see one of her favorite musicals Aladdin. We had an amazing time but it was also painful to see sections of San Francisco with so many hurt and homeless people. While there offering a smile, a kind word and a friendly conversation with a stranger emphasized my desire to lift people up. Later I received a phone call from an acquaintance and my first instinct was to let it go to voice mail (I’m not much of a phone person) but since it was the second time they called I knew they needed to talk. I picked up the phone and had a conversation. Sure enough, they just needed to share some news, vent about a concern and ask for prayer. I listened, offered some words of encouragement and prayed for them. When I hung up, I felt that tug again. These are little things I can do to uplift someone.

I was browsing Facebook and saw that Jen Fulwiler, who made the Saint Generator, also made the new Word of the Year Generator. I thought it would be interesting to see if I was given a word leaning towards the new word I was contemplating. I prayed, clicked the link and my word was….

TOAST.

My first thoughts… What the heck?Ā Ā  Toast?Ā Ā Ā  As in “You’re toast.” Ā  “Burnt toast.”Ā Ā  “Dry as toast.”Ā Ā  “My daughter’s going to marry Ian Miller. A xeno with a TOAST family.ā€

How was that supposed to be my word? Of course, then I thought about giving a toast. Raising a glass and saying kind words about someone. Lifting them up. Celebrating their joys. Wishing them all the best. Yes, that sounds more like what has been on my mind. The word that was really pressing on my heart was “Encourage.”

This morning as I was in bed waiting for my alarm to go off, I was thinking about the word encourage and two more points came to mind.

One, to encourage myself with positive thinking. As I am reviewing last year’s goals and making new goals I was reminded to shut down any self negative talk. (You failed at that. You can’t do that. Why would anyone care what you think? You’ll never be as good as her. You seriously suck at keeping your house clean.”) And instead use more encouraging language in my head. (Be brave. Give it a try. Focus on the positive. Be yourself. Work at it in baby steps until you get it done.) It may seem stupid but I think it makes a difference in my mental and emotional outlook.

Secondly, as I was saying my morning prayers, I felt like Jesus was reminding me that I need to turn to Him for encouragement and not to always seek comfort in a piece of chocolate or some online shopping or binging on Netflix when I’m stressed or need a break. Instead He wants me to turn to Him first. Let Him comfort and encourage my spirit. Then it’ll be easier for me to enjoy the other activities in moderation. šŸ˜‰

So long story short – My word is encouragement.

My Saint of 2018

For my saint, I used the saint generator and got St. Teresa Margaret Redi. I had never heard of her before but after reading about her I discovered that her main goal in life was to love God and to share that love with others. She did her daily activities without fanfare and worked tirelessly in her convent’s infirmary taking care of people and lifting up their spirits. (It was also said that she had the gift of healing.) So, I am praying that St. Teresa Margaret will help me this year to love God, share that love with others and to bring healing to broken spirits by offering encouragement and love.

Did you pick a saint or word of the year? Do share!

PS – You can follow RoL on Bloglovin, Feedly or another news feed. If you are a social media fan like me, we can stay in touch through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, GoodReads, Letterboxd, or Spotify, šŸ˜‰
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Word of 2016: Balanced (Motivated by Compassion)

RevolutionofLove.com - Word of the Year - Balanced // goals_jan_feb_2016A

For the last couple of years I have been choosing one word or phrase that would be my theme of the new year. In 2013 it was “love God in little things”. In 2014 it was ora et labora (work and pray.) In 2015 it was Be Still.

So what is the word for 2016?? Balanced.

The definition of the word is “keeping or showing a balance; arranged in good proportions.” It reminds me of something someone once told me. They explained that your life is like a table with four legs. Each leg represents the four main aspects of your life – physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual. When all four areas are balanced, then your table is strong and steady. But when one area is lacking, like a table with a short leg, your life is wobbly and unbalanced.

I need more balance in my life right now, especially after the holidays. I feel like I’ve overindulged in more areas than one. I want to get things back in order but in a realistic and do-able manner. I don’t want my goals to be too far fetched. Instead of saying, “I will lose 50 pounds immediately!” I’ll instead say, “I will return to my daily walking goals and put down the leftover Christmas cookies.” Rather than, “I will dump out all the items in that junk closet and reorganize it before the kids come home from school,”Ā  I’ll say, “I’ll spend 15 minutes a day tackling a small organizing project so I am not overwhelmed. Things like that – Balanced.

RevolutionofLove.com - Word of 2016: Balanced // goals_jan_feb_2016B

For my motivation to keep up this balanced way of thinking, I will use the second word that was heavy on my heart – Compassion. It is one thing for me to make a resolution. But it is an entirely other thing for me to actually keep it. I know myself. I get all gung-ho about something and then the novelty wears off and I’m all, “Meh.” However, when there is a strong motivation, it helps me to stay the course. For me, compassion and love are what wins me over. I am a sucker for helping another person out and wanting to do something kind for them. So when I am looking at my budget and am tempted to buy that “must have” item at Target that we really can’t afford, I will think of Brian working hard for our family to provide for us. My compassion for him as a husband and father will be my motivation to step away from the shiny object and move on.

Likewise, when I am at home and complaining about all the stinkin laundry or dirty dishes or the kids that keep interrupting when I am trying to get something done, I will remember that I am their mom. I show my love for my family by keeping a semi-tidy home and I share my love for God by stopping to help my kiddps when they need me. My compassion for them helps me to keep a balanced home life – not always goofing off and not doing my daily duties but also not always so busy that I can’t stop and spend time with my kiddos.

So that’s my word for the year – Balanced, motivated by compassion.

How about you? Did you pick a word for the year? What is it?

Tomorrow I’ll share my goals for January and February. šŸ™‚

PS – You can follow RoL on Bloglovin, Feedly or another news feed. If you are a social media fan like me, we can stay in touch through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Periscope/Katch, GoodReads Letterboxd, Spotify or Instagram. šŸ˜‰