My Word in 2014
I didn’t “officially” announce a word of mine for 2013, but it started and ended up being Grace. For myself, for others, for my grief. I wasn’t real great at giving grace in any area, but it was a constant reminder to me to at least try. I began to think about the journeys and feelings of others, while allowing myself to just be – sad, happy, angry, bitter, excited – just be.
This year is a bit harder. I started thinking about a word in December. Not as a resolution of sorts, but more like a mantra. Something small and repetitive that would pop in my head in moments I needed to change my attitude or perspective on things I struggle with.
I sat at my little desk a few minutes ago still pondering a word, although one in particular has been tugging at me. Seeing my Bible, I had that 12 year old Diana moment where I tested God constantly. “Prove something to me Lord. Show me you’re real.”
And if I’m honest, this time a bit of, “You owe me this.”
I opened in the middle, and started reading. Psalm 116.
and my prayer for mercy.
2 Because he bends down to listen,
I will pray as long as I have breath!
3 Death wrapped its ropes around me;
the terrors of the grave overtook me.
I saw only trouble and sorrow.
4 Then I called on the name of the Lord:
“Please, Lord, save me!”
5 How kind the Lord is! How good he is!
So merciful, this God of ours!
6 The Lord protects those of childlike faith;
I was facing death, and he saved me.
7 Let my soul be at rest again,
for the Lord has been good to me.
8 He has saved me from death,
my eyes from tears,
my feet from stumbling.
9 And so I walk in the Lord’s presence
as I live here on earth!
10 I believed in you, so I said,
“I am deeply troubled, Lord.”
11 In my anxiety I cried out to you,
“These people are all liars!”
12 What can I offer the Lord
for all he has done for me?
13 I will lift up the cup of salvation
and praise the Lord’s name for saving me.
14 I will keep my promises to the Lord
in the presence of all his people. 15 The Lord cares deeply
when his loved ones die.
16 O Lord, I am your servant;
yes, I am your servant, born into your household;
you have freed me from my chains.
17 I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving
and call on the name of the Lord.
18 I will fulfill my vows to the Lord
in the presence of all his people—
19 in the house of the Lord
in the heart of Jerusalem. Praise the Lord!
So here I stand. On the very tip of 2014, looking out onto an unknown 12 months. My heart is broken, my faith is shaken. I am angry and I am tired of grieving and tired of searching for answers that I’ll never find.
I’m asking for mercy this year. Mercy for myself. Mercy to others.
“When justice is meted out, we receive what we deserve. When mercy is extended, we do not receive what we deserve. When grace is bestowed, we receive what we do not deserve.” – Apologetics Press
It might seem crazy to focus on mercy when I continually struggle with the fact that I didn’t do anything that caused Kaden, Preston, or Julian to die. But guess what? Everyone has tough times in life, that’s what life is. My tough times just happen to suck a bit more than others right now.
In all honesty, as bewildered as I am that this happened again, I also deeply know that I’d rather be who I am right now, angry and all, than never have faced any of this and still be the shallow little twit I was 2 years ago. Who thought God’s love had something to do with me getting the right material things in life or being comfortable. I have a relationship with Him that is far deeper than I ever thought possible – yes, even in my anger. It causes me to search and seek Him and His will ever more.
I’d still choose this life over anyone else’s.
And so this year, I ask God for mercy on me. Mercy on my family. We are human. We sin all the time. I don’t deserve half of the good He’s given me in the midst of this mess. But I’m asking for this year to be a merciful year on us. On our hearts.
Then for me to turn around and show that mercy to others. I’ll fail. I’ll retaliate and make myself look like a fool. I’ll blow up, be selfish, and probably say bad words. But I still choose Jesus and His mercy. Every day. Forever.