ELast year, I wrestled with God over my word for 2015. Late in 2014, I heard God whispering a word to me - refine. Not the word I wanted to hear. Refine is a scary word, one that brings thoughts of Job losing everything or David running for his life. There's no safety in that word. Instead of choosing it, I ran away, choosing dwell as my word for the year. Even as I did, God whispered to me, "It will be a year of refinement, whether you name it that or not."
He was right.
Last January started a long, hard year full of changes and challenges. It was definitely a year of refinement. As is often the case, I learned lessons through those hard times that I wouldn't have learned any other way. While I never want to repeat them, I can look back and see why I needed them.
Most of all God showed me last year that He is faithful. He's with us through the fires of refinement, and He really can create something beautiful from the ashes of loss and change. God changed my word last year, and through that, He changed my life.
As December drew to a close, I'd almost decided not to choose a word for 2016. Nothing felt right. Just when I was about to give up, God dropped a word into my heart: renew.
It's exactly what I need. God took me through the fires of refinement. Now He's making me new. This year, my prayer is that God will renew my heart, my mind, my body, and my soul. This year will be a journey of becoming new.