Growth for the New Year

So I think I told someone that I found out about the One Word idea last year, but I realize that’s incorrect. This is my fourth year using My One Word instead of New Year’s Resolutions. First of all, if you’ve never heard of My One Word, it’s an idea that began in the church pastored by Mike Ashcroft, and he wrote a book about it entitled, you guessed it, My One Word. It’s a great book. I encourage you to read it. Anyway, I digress. The concept of My One Word is that you pray about what God wants you to focus on for the next year, and you make lists of words, continue to pray and narrow down the list. In the end you end up with a word that you use to focus on for an entire year. Sometimes people end up with two words, but it’s really designed for one.

My first year actually started in the summer, so I only had the word for half a year. I don’t remember that word. The next two years I had the same word, humble. I had a really hard time with that word. I like the limelight and I like being in charge of things. I had to really work on my attitude and perspective the last two years with a word like “humble.” I’m still working on it, but I must have improved because God gave me a new word this year.

I like this new word: GROWTH. It has a lot to do with the new purpose God has given me related to writing. I’m glad I’ve been immersed in the writing world and ACFW for almost an entire year now. It has made me realize how little I truly know about what I’m doing. I think it’s that way with a lot of things. Until you get into them, you don’t know what you don’t know or what you need to know. Well, I’ve discovered I know very little.

This year, in 2019, I plan to return to school. Not literally, but I’m implementing a program of self-study on the craft of writing fiction. Not just any old fiction, but fiction that sells. And gets published. That people want to read. And read again. And encourage their friends to read, so they can discuss it together. You get the idea. I’ve already ordered a book on writing and listened to one on audio about character arcs. Half the battle is understanding the vocabulary. Just like any other profession, I guess.

Another reason I like this new word is it’s relevance to personal growth toward Jesus and a closer relationship with him. I want to study the Bible more and continue to work on prayer. I believe strongly that if my purpose is to write Christian fiction, then I’d better be sure I’m able to understand the Biblical truths I’m supposed to be including in my writing.

Photo by Samuel Zeller on Unsplash

If anybody has a must read book on novel or fiction writing, post it in the comments. I’ll check them out and thank you for your recommendations. Also, post your words if you have them!


  1. Great ideas for sure. I know I’ve spent some time learning, but for now I think God’s calling me to lay aside fiction the idea just needs to simmer and coalesce, and frankly I need a little more breathing room to actually clean it up and present it well.

    God’s put 2 or 3 nonfiction projects on my heart that I can’t shake, though my time is going to be very short this semester. I know I’ll be writing them in smaller chunks but I think NF lends itself to that anyway. So… stepping out in faith and doing what my hand finds to do right now first and foremost!


    1. I understand how God can move us from one track to another. That’s what happened to me with fiction a few years ago. Now I’m back there running hard. I wish you blessings in your non-fiction journey. The stories won’t leave. They’ll just be enhanced.

      Sent from my iPhone


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      1. I think they are just premature. With the kids at the ages they are and all the rest, I just don’t have large enough blocks of time to make it work. It needs to simmer on a back burner for awhile and someday, I’ll get it put together. I have no doubt of that.

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  2. Yep. I’m a bit ahead of you in the kid department, so I totally get it. I could never have written like I am now when they were still in school. Way too much going on that would take me away from the story. I have discovered how much better my story progresses when I am able to write every day.


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