one word 2014 :: excellence


I kind of had a hard time discerning my one word for 2014. Even as I write this, I’m asking, “Is this it?” but nothing else comes up when I pray about it. I’m looking forward, though, to being able to look back at the end of this year and see how it was, indeed, the word for 2014. Last year, I felt God said the word was faith. It was certainly a year of faithfaith to see God move in miraculous ways. I still can’t believe everything He did even when we didn’t feel it in the moment. I’m thankful to be a part of such an amazing journey.

Back to my one word for 2014. There’s three messages that are constantly burning on my heart that I seem to come back to over and over again…humility, identity in Christ, and excellence.

My word for 2014 is excellence.

I heard a message years ago that defined excellence as doing your best, being willing to improve, and being courageous enough to change. It’s something we constantly talk about here in S. Africa, living a life of excellence. If I look at it a bit deeper, it looks something like this for me personally.

  • I need to learn to handle stress better. I recently had a round of health issues. After consulting with the doctor and doing some tests, the basic conclusion is that it’s stress. HUGE WAKE UP CALL. I’ve always known that I don’t handle stress well, but I can’t recall a time when my health was so greatly affected by it. 


  • Finishing well. Not as in finishing my time here in S. Africa, but as in finishing things I started. I felt like the end of 2013 left me with a lot of unfinished physical projects. Doing my best means following through to the very end and not tapering off when the excitement and stamina have left.
  • Buy a bath tub. Yes, it’s funny, but I don’t have one in my house. One of my de-stressers in the past was to take a warm, soothing bath, drink a cup of tea, and read a book. I haven’t done that for over a year. Hmmm…
  • Take my emotions to God. I carry stress on my shoulders. This year, I want to learn a new level of taking my overwhelmed emotions to the One who can carry those burdens. 
  • Regularly doing those things that give me life. I’m not going to lie. It’s been a busy year, and it hasn’t been the easiest. When I’m tired, that’s when I need to rest. That’s when I need a fresh breath of life. I just spent a weekend crafting and sewing and creating. I started Monday morning with such energy. It was fantastic!

I think they all kind of flow together, really. Pursuing a life of excellence for me this year means I need to be courageous enough to change in key areas of my life. It doesn’t sound like the same exciting ride as that risk year but hey, change is all about the long haul, and that’s exciting to me.

Do you have a one word for 2014?

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  • Reply
    Elisa | blissfulE
    February 27, 2014 at 8:14 am

    Sorry to hear you've been having health problems from too much stress. I'm not very good about finishing things I start, either. I still haven't figured out how to tackle that effectively; my current strategy is to start fewer things. I'm also learning Paul's secret of contentment: I can do everything, through Him who gives me strength. Everything HE wants me to do, through HIS strength. And I've found that in my stage of life, what He wants is usually a much shorter, but more significant, to-do list than I would come up with. Things like spending more time in prayer and submitting more quickly and graciously to Him and to my husband.

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