~by Debbie Christopher
We concluded part one with a short list of possible to-do or call to action phrases that could be used with common ‘words of the year’. Having a verb attached to our ‘word of the year’ helps us consider what we can DO to apply that word. Here’s that list:
Be kind/Show kindness
Act on opportunities
Fulfill our purpose
Then I asked, ‘What verb can be used with clarity to help us apply it to our lives in 2023?"
In this post, I will attempt to provide an answer that is encouraging and beneficial.
Basically, it comes down to having clarity...but how to you DO that?
We don’t just simply HAVE clarity, but God GIVES us clarity. I would like to take the liberty to define clarity as a confident peace given to us by our loving Father, through the Holy Spirit, that encourages us through bumpy, confusing times and reassures us as we make important decisions.
But, if you’re anything like me, you still want to apply this ‘word of the year’…we want to DO something!
Lessons from a previously mentioned Bible study and one point in our pastor’s recent sermon provide a perfect suggestion for what verb we can use.
Clarity ‘happens’ when we SEE what God is doing…when we understand that His plan is falling into place. This was the insight I gained from our Bible Study.
From that, I suggest that we consider the phrase, ‘recognize clarity’. God gives us the clarity we need when it’s time…we just need to recognize it!
In a New Year’s series that our pastor entitled ‘A Plan of Attack’, he shared guidelines from Philippians 1 that we can follow as we set our goals for the new year. He specifically introduced the plan of attack in week two, and the first step was about remaining steadfast. But, it was the first sub-point that grabbed my attention (as I was already working on this blog) and, although clarity wasn’t the theme of his sermon, the point fit so perfectly with ‘recognize clarity’ that I excitedly emphasized it in my sermon notes!
The first sub point under how to be steadfast was ‘Trust God’….Pastor then provided this explanation..."Trust God, because, when we do, we learn, we grow, and (here’s the kicker)…we understand." (Phil Housley)
My scribbled notes hurriedly bent towards clarity. When we learn from bumpy circumstances and grow from those lessons we can then understand God's plan and purpose , and when we understand…we can respond/act/decide confidently. We can know!
So that particular sub point about Trusting God fits perfectly with recognizing clarity. Consider Proverbs 3:5-6 seen below:
Trust in the Lord…
Learn from and grow ---not from our understanding, but by understanding God's plan and purpose for our lives...
Acknowledge Him…recognize and accept His plan and purpose...
And He will direct our paths…by giving us a confident peace....by giving us clarity.
When we learn from, grow, and understand what God HAS been doing…and recognize what He IS doing…and can respond/act/decide confidently, we have recognized clarity.
Why were we so confident about saying yes to that open door opportunity without all the doubting questions listed in my previous post (linked above and at the end of today's blog)?
How did we KNOW? How can you KNOW?
By reflecting on what God had/has been doing through a difficult journey,
By learning and growing through the process.
By acknowledging God's plan and purpose for our lives.
By recognizing the clarity God provides…we just know.
If you think it’s just too simple, remember, the learning process was the difficult part…you’ve grown through the difficult stage…now, trust God and enjoy the peace that comes from His provided clarity.
Learn, trust, grow, trust, recognize, keep on trusting, and move forward…
Link to part one: