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So I have seen and heard many friends selecting a word of the year for 2014. After a quick Google search I even learned that there is even a book and website devoted to this. From the first time I saw a friend announce their word of the year for 2014 I thought it was a great idea but what word? Interestingly enough from the beginning one word kept coming back to mind, persevere. So I have decided that it will be my word of the year for 2014.

Webster’s online defines persevere as:

to persist in a state, enterprise, or undertaking in spite of counterinfluences, opposition, or discouragement

This word has so many applications for this coming year. I need to persevere with watching my eating so that I can maintain my weight loss/eating goals for this year. My desire is to get back below 200 pounds and to get more fit. Related to this I will begin training for my first half ironman triathlon(70.3) this year. This will be the most physically demanding undertaking I have ever attempted in my life. To accomplish that I will have to be consistent with my training and to not give up when my training gets difficult or doesn’t go as planned. And I will certainly have to persevere on race day as I will be out on course for somewhere between 6-7 hours.

The other and more important area where I need to apply this is in my faith. I need to persevere all that this world throws at me and focus on my relationship with God. I need to put him first in no matter what. Today at church our pastor used 1 Corinthians 9:16-23 in mapping out how our Church is going to succeed in our goals for the year. Interestingly enough this was given to us a one word as well, One. What really struck me though as I listened to the sermon was what I read in the remaining verses of chapter 9:

Don’t you know that the runners in a stadium all race, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way to win the prize. Now everyone who competes exercises self-control in everything. However, they do it to receive a crown that will fade away, but we a crown that will never fade away. Therefore I do not run like one who runs aimlessly or box like one beating the air. Instead, I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified. (1 Corinthians 9:24-27 HCSB)

Obviously as a runner and triathlete these verses got my attention but what really got me was verse 27:

Instead, I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified. (1 Corinthians 9:27 HCSB)

That’s when it hit me, persevere. How can I succeed at my training goals, my weight loss goals, my faith without perseverance.
So it was today five days into 2014 that I settled on my one word of 2014 and that I should actually make it my word.

This year I will persevere. Through the easy days, the hard days, the boring, the highs, the lows, the successes and the failures in 2014 I will persevere.

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