As the end of 2012 approached, I began to pray and ask the Lord if He had a word for me for 2013. The first time I heard it was in a sermon. In the days that followed, it was placed before my eyes or ears a few more times, helping to confirm in my heart and mind that this was what He had for me.
The word is: Cultivate
As I began to ponder this word, I decided to look it up in the dictionary. I knew what it meant, but sometimes words can have multiple meanings or nuances that may not immediately come to mind. There were six different definitions, but three in particular stood out to me, and I noticed an overarching theme of relationships.
Definition 1: to improve and prepare (land), as by plowing and fertilizing, for raising crops
First and foremost, I need to deepen my walk with the Lord. I need to be improving and preparing my heart for Him on a daily basis. Just as garden soil needs to be fertilized, tilled, and weeded, I need to be doing the same with my heart. It is my desire to dig deeper into the Word, and allow that process to reveal those “weeds” in my heart and life that need to be removed. The whole point of cultivating land is to raise a crop. I am excited to learn what He wants to raise within me this year, and am anxious for new growth. (Psalm 37:3)
Definition 2: To nurture; foster
As a parent, I am reminded of my constant need for Him to help me shepherd my little flock of two. I need to provide nourishing food (the Word), gather them when I sense them straying, carry them when they are weary or struggling, and gently lead them. (Isaiah 40:11)
Definition 3: To seek the acquaintance or good will of; make friends with
It will be my goal to really invest in friendships. My desire is that I will be able to take what I learn in my personal walk, and use it to encourage and minister to others. (1 Thessalonians 5:11)
Verse of the Year:
Trust in the Lord, and do good; Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. (Psalm 37:3, NASB)
This year’s word is full of action, and will require diligence. I am excited to “dig in,” and look forward to new growth in all areas of my life!