Every December I not only set goals for the upcoming year, but I choose a word for the year, too.  I knew what my word for 2021 would be before we were halfway through 2020.

In the past, I’ve chosen words like “magic” or “faith.” For 2013, I chose three words — joy, communion, and gratitude. My word for 2019 was CHANGE. When I looked back at 2018 it didn’t look much different from 2017. I was struggling with the same issues and trying to accomplish the same goals. I felt I had lived the same year twice. So, I vowed to do something big to change my life. And in May of 2019, I quit my job.

My word for 2020 was GROWTH. I chose that word because I was ready to level up in every area of my life. In my freelance life, I wanted to start writing for more national publications. In my blogging life, I wanted to reach new readers. In my personal life, I wanted to be healthy and happy with my body and I wanted to do 40 fun and new things before my 40th birthday, which is in February 2021.

But when you pray for growth, be prepared for pruning.

On January 24, 2020, I was diagnosed with breast cancer and the shearing began.  This year has taken so much from me – my health, my hair, my hustle and — some days — my hope.

But I am a woman of faith. Even when I’m so angry with God we’re temporarily not on speaking terms, eventually I cry out “I believe! Help my unbelief!”

In the Bible a man named Job, a man who lost so much more than I have, much more than I can even fathom, stayed faithful to God through all his turmoil and God restored all he lost twofold.

My prayer is that in 2021 God will do the same for me.

So, my word for 2021 is RESTORATION.

At first, my word for 2021 was going to be RESTORE. You may be thinking those two words are the same but for me they’re not.

RESTORE is a verb. So, for me, this word is all about what I can and will do to restore my health and happiness. And that’s fine. Faith without works is dead, right?

But works without faith – that’s a problem, too.

RESTORATION is a noun. RESTORATION is a gift I can humbly receive from God.

So, while I will do my part to restore my health and to bring my 2021 dreams to fruition, I will pray every step of the way.

I urge you to choose a word for 2021, too. This word can be a source of inspiration and even a compass. For example, if you chose a word like GROWTH, when faced with a decision you could ask yourself, “Will this help me grow?” to be sure that the things you’re doing will help you grow in ways that bring you closer to your ultimate vision for your life.

What’s your word for 2021?