skyWhat is your word for 2016?

Many of my friends, instead of making New Year’s Resolutions, are choosing a single word to inspire their year. At one level I get the appeal.  Most of us make the same resolutions year after year. Eat less.  Drink less.  Exercise more.  Be more organized.

Resolutions don’t do much for me, but the single word approach wasn’t cutting it either.

What I really wanted to do was post a plea on my Facebook wall.  “I know that many of you aren’t religious.  I get that.  But I would really appreciate it if you would cease and desist with the posts about how narrow-minded and judgmental religious people are.  Quite frankly, it seems ironically narrow-minded and judgmental.”

I thought about it, but I didn’t post it.  I didn’t want to seem belligerent or judgmental myself.

I woke up on New Year’s Day to a stellar irony.  I hadn’t posted about lack-of-tolerance, but one of my other posts had set off a member of the narrow-minded non-religious. I hate to admit how badly it upset me.  It was even more upsetting to see how many likes her nasty comment had received.

I had to fight down the urge to comment myself. I managed to get up and walk away.

What does this have to do with prayer and faith?  The truth of the matter is that I am more than a touch confrontational. The only sport I enjoyed playing in school? Hockey. On my own, walking away is almost impossible.  Keeping my mouth shut is twice as tough.

Sometimes I manage to do it because I know it is what God wants.  Other times, I pull it off because I am busy asking for guidance.  Still other times I’m too busy giving God a piece of my mind.

God-ward.  Microsoft Word says this isn’t a legitimate word but it is my word for the year. When I am turned toward God, I have hope and can see the possibilities.  Turned God-ward, I am stronger than I am alone.  Without Him, it is far too easy to be judgmental and outspoken, two things that never build people up but only tear them down.

My word for 2016?  God-ward.