You should know one thing about me: I took considerably too long to commit to the 2016 calendar that's now hanging on my refrigerator. The ugly process of internal vacillating went down in a Wal-Mart aisle: Do I want prints of landscapes or architecture? What about color schemes? Maybe black and white? What about font choices? Come on, Robin, just pick one! No, wait! Would another store have a better selection?
When my wavering veered past thoroughness and teetered on the brink of ridiculousness, I tried to justify myself: "You're going to live with this thing in your kitchen for an entire year. Might as well love it."
Apparently, I have long-term commitment issues with paper products.
Even so, when our church issued an invitation to select "one word" to guide us through the new year, my decision was nearly immediate. With laser-like focus, I knew my 2016 word would be wisdom.
Oh yes, I need wisdom. I need wisdom when I parent, which, I've noticed, is becoming increasingly mental and decreasingly physical as my children age. I need wisdom when I teach to explain concepts, engage my students, and evaluate their work. I need wisdom to make decisions about my future. I need wisdom to understand how to best invest my time and energy.
Often when I face complex problems with a plethora of options to consider, I'm left paralyzed, much like when I stood in Wal-Mart with seven calendars splayed out around me. I don't know what to choose. I don't know what to do. I don't know what's best.
And that's precisely why my word for the year is wisdom -- because I need it, and because I don't always have it. This apparent disconnect -- namely, my simultaneously vast need for and lack of wisdom -- is addressed in this wonderful passage of scripture:
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.
I love this promise with the intensity of a thousand burning suns. If you lack, ask. That part is relatively simple, yet it would behoove me to ask more often, more quickly. But the part I appreciate the most comes next -- that God gives generously to all without finding fault. Without finding fault! No accusations of, "You should have known better," which I've been known to levy at myself, are issued.
It's settled: 2016 is the year of increased wisdom. I'll mark it on my calendar.
Have you chosen "one word" to guide you through the year? What word?
Image by Carol Schiraldi. Used with permission. (Thanks, Carol!)