What’s your word for 2019?

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Our life group gathered last night to celebrate the season and of course, share our word for the year ahead. An annual tradition that I have encouraged for many years.

FLOURISH is the word that I chose, meaning – to grow or develop in a healthy or vigorous way, especially as the result of a particularly favorable environment.

There might have been a little mockery at the cheesiness of my word, mostly from myself but when the Spirit of God encourages a word in me – who am I to argue?!

I love the idea of a favorable environment where I can grow – I will be focusing on EVERY area – mentally, emotionally, physically, spiritually.

I remembered some thoughts I had written on this subject a while ago…

Are you languishing or flourishing? John Ortberg describes the two…

Languishing is recognized as the absence of mental or emotional vitality. This can result in isolation, discontentment, discouragement, feeling irritable, insignificant and troubled. A failure to thrive.

Flourishing is to grasp your purpose for living. To become God’s best version of you. Recognizing and understanding your own conditions that lead to your flourishing. When you flourish you cannot help but pour blessing into relationships. You listen to others. You are struck by their dreams. You bless. You are open. You forgive.

‘For us to reach that point of true flourishing you first need to know, grasp and believe the truth that you are God’s masterpiece. God’s Masterpiece!’

Faith flourishes when it finds its flow from the One true vine then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” (Colossians 2:6-7)

As the year closes I encourage you to take time to ask God for YOUR word for the year ahead. He has plans and intentions for your life far beyond all you can ask or imagine. Ask Him to give you a glimpse of what that could look like with a simple word.

Happy New Year!

You are loved,

Michelle xo

PS. If a word doesn’t come to you… you can have mine 😉

 

Yes! Look how you’ve made all your lovers to flourish like palm trees, each one growing in victory, standing with strength!

You’ve transplanted them into your heavenly courtyard,

where they are thriving before you.

For in your presence they will still overflow and be anointed.

Even in their old age they will stay fresh, bearing luscious fruit and abiding faithfully.

Psalm 92 tpt

 

Sweet 2016

Hello again, Happy New Year from our family to yours!

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Having spent a wonderful three weeks over Christmas in Stourbridge our hometown we are now back home to Kelowna and excited for the New Year…. and the snow.

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Christmas saw us celebrating Phil’s 50th UK style, our 18th wedding anniversary, Bella’s 13th birthday and a memorable trip to London. Phil walked the Worcestershire way in one day with his friends – 35 miles of English countryside. Not quite the 2-day ramble Phil and I completed a couple of years ago (Read about that one here) We enjoyed a few days away with our fave friends who were visiting from Brisbane. Not to mention Christmas and New Year celebrations… I think I need a holiday! So blessed to know the love of family and friends on both sides of the pond.

Onto 2016!

I am currently collating prophetic words for 2016 and look forward to posting my annual mashup over the next week or two. Here is the post 2015 – in order to look ahead at all God wants to do it is important to acknowledge all that God has done.

There is excitement in the air at Willow Park Church as we head into a focused period of 21 days prayer and fasting. In addition, we have an ongoing prayer room for the next week at Highway 33 where you can creatively pray and join with others. This is a significant time for our church and the city of Kelowna. Leave your prayer requests in comments and I can post them in our prayer room walls.

Prayer Changes Things

As ever, I challenged my friends to think of their word for 2016. My word for 2015 was LAUGHTER… I realize as an INFJ I seem to laugh more on the inside and smile on the outside! #lil

My word for the year is BELOVED.

That I would always know I am His beloved and the fullness of that.

That I would see everyone I meet as His beloved.

And because of that – those I meet would know they are His beloved.

“When we claim and constantly reclaim the truth of being the chosen ones, we soon discover within ourselves a deep desire to reveal to others their own chosenness. Instead of making us feel that we are better, more precious or valuable than others, our awareness of being chosen opens our eyes to the chosenness of others. That is the great joy of being chosen: the discovery that others are chosen as well. In the house of God there are many mansions. There is a place for everyone – a unique, special place. Once we deeply trust that we ourselves are precious in God’s eyes, we are able to recognize the preciousness of others and their unique places in God’s heart.” Henri Nouwen.

What is your word for the year ahead?

That’s all for now – let me know your prayer requests and your word.

I’ll be back with my prophetic mashup soon,

Love, Michelle xo

Sign up here for 21 days of prayer and fasting devotionals from Willow Park Church.

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12

 

Laughter is a Leap

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The arrow of time moves swiftly.

For some as 2014 closes, you’re happy to see the back of it, draw a line and stride over the threshold into 2014. A year of pain for some – health, finances, grief and loss, others, a year of surprises, adventures, twists and turns and for most a combination of all.

My inbox is full of inspiring New Year blogs this morning. Social Media alive with sparkle and well wishes.

Thank you for reading and sharing my blog this year – my most read were “The Worcestershire Way’ ‘Fighting Fires’ and ‘Isolation to Restoration’. It was visited from 97 countries and as ever my mom is my biggest commenter and cheerleader! Here’s to my writing life continuing to do what it does. Musing on life, faith, the mundane and the mountaintop and weaving it into a God filled experience.

Join me again in 2015?

Every year we gather with a few friends over Christmas and discuss our one word for the year ahead.

Mine for 2015… LAUGHTER!

Laughter#ifonlymyeyesdidntdisappear

“Solemnity flows out of men naturally; but laughter is a leap. It is easy to be heavy: hard to be light.” GK Chesterton

God is joyful. He sings, he laughs, he delights. Scripture says all creation was given a measure of glory – that’s us too. You hold a part in the chorus of the creator that no one else plays. You are alive with light and life. There is something unique about you that represents the Father heart of God.

Our joy is often lost when were turn inwards – becoming negative and self critical. Let’s fix our eyes on Him, the great designer. We were made to recognize His voice, our issue is when we don’t hear him, or rather we don’t listen, when our negative critical self talk speaks a louder, darker voice.

‘Joy is peace out loud. Peace is quiet joy’ BJ

Lets have a quick look at Nehemiah 8 and Psalm 23 then you can carry on partying…

In Nehemiah 8 we see a people who have found God’s word after being without it. The picture is wonderful, everyone standing from morning until afternoon listening in to the word – families, communities gathered, listening. Soon enough, tears – mourning as they discover among other things a standard they cannot meet.

For some of us a familiar story.

Here’s the good news. God had other ideas.

Here it is in verse 10.

“Go home and prepare a feast, holiday food and drink; and share it with those who don’t have anything: This day is holy to God. Don’t feel bad. The joy of God is your strength!”

This image of family, community, eating, feasting, living, sharing. God knows life is hard work and He offers us His joy to be our strength!

The story goes on to say. Then all the people went away to eat and drink, to send portions of food and to celebrate with great joy, because they now understood the words that had been made known to them.

They understood. They lived it. The seed of joy taking root, far from the topsoil where the enemy can steal.

As I ponder this truth, I think of my one of my favourites, verse 5 from Psalm 23. ‘You spread out a table before me, 
provisions in the midst of attack from my enemies’

Picture that. Your enemies. You know them. We all have them. God promises you will feast in the midst of them. You will eat, know his goodness, and in that eating, you will find that the joy of the Lord is your strength.

Let us set the feasting atmosphere for 2015. TOGETHER!

“I know not all that may be coming, but be it what it will, I’ll go to it laughing.”(Herman Melville, Moby-Dick)

IMG_0428 Happy New Year from my family to yours!

Love, Michelle xo