Naming the New Year

Following on a suggestion by Jenny at Suscpico , I asked the Holy Spirit to give me a word for this year. To quote Jenny:

“There is a common practice of “Naming” the year by setting aside a word for the year; a focal point to direct our days, weave our weeks together and attach month to blessed month.  Just as a North Star, or the straight arrow of a compass will redirect the lost, weary and confused so our word for the year can gently lead us back on the path we have set out for ourselves.  All steps are directed by God the Father, but the way in which we choose to walk is up to us.” 

The word that popped into my head immediately  for this year is Surrendering. It is a verb and not a noun because surrendering is a process, a journey that I have been on for 40 years, since I was 17. I am now at the crux of my journey.  This year I choose not to ignore the heavy pressing in of God but to face my fears head on and say yes to Him.



The pivotal point in my relationship to Christ the Saviour is my fearful clinging to control. I have let go of this control at least a thousand times. A thousand times of choosing to surrender fear and lies and trusting in Him. Each time  God peels back a layer, another deeper level becomes visible.

A quote from The Catechism of the Catholic Church

1741 Liberation and salvation. By his glorious Cross Christ has won salvation for all men. He redeemed them from the sin that held them in bondage. “For freedom Christ has set us free.” In him we have communion with the “truth that makes us free.” The Holy Spirit has been given to us and, as the Apostle teaches, “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” Already we glory in the “liberty of the children of God.”

First surface emotions and outer wounds were  surrendered and I experienced the joy of allowing Him to set me free. Next images (1)were layer upon layer of generational wounds and sins, burdens that I carried that were not mine to carry. In a sense my burden bearing was an attempt to act like Jesus. In my suffering, I  was trying to act like a scapegoat  to save my family. Only when I became desperately miserable did I let go.

Surrendering seems like a big deal; I resist not out of pride but out of fear. The image that came to mind almost 20 years ago was of a shattered wagon wheel suspended over a deep chasm. All my family are standing on the rim and I am right on the centre hub, grabbing spokes and attempting to hold everything together. And Jesus? Why He is so far away, I can hardly see Him but He is sitting on a throne, leaning His head on one hand watching and waiting for me to allow him to do all the work, to save my family.

Deeper than my experiences, deeper than generational stuff is Adam and Eve, Satan and finally God. God, holding my true self, my true self hidden in God is my centre. I am safe here, at peace, flowing in and through the Spirit. This is where I choose to live. This is the last surrender of my false self and my fears. This is where I choose to live this year, in freedom and joy. I visit this place in the snap of a finger but I only function here for a snap of a finger. This year I choose to stay there, in Him.

15 thoughts on “Naming the New Year

  1. This is very inspirational. Thank you.

    We often fear to surrender because deep in the recesses of our mind a small voice throws in doubt … I’ve struggled with this often. But then … my Faith is less than half a mustard seed.

    God bless.


  2. Your choice of theme has a great deal of depth. I have been thinking a lot about our freedom in Christ. It is a struggle to surrender, and I must admit that the beginning of the year has me taking the reins and trying to do much to control life. Of course, part of this is stewardship, but it can certainly be overdone if I begin to rely on myself rather than surrender to the Lord’s plan. Thank you for bringing this to mind.


  3. Beautiful post, Melanie! Thank you for bearing your heart as we may see a mirror for ourselves. For me, surrendering is always one step forward, two steps back. The key is to keep on keeping on, not to give up hope. God bless your year of YES!


  4. I’ve never heard of naming the year before,but loved the idea,so I prayed for the Lord to give me a word. At first I didn’t understand the word He gave me~FULLY,but then I did. He wants me to be fully alive,fully engaged,fully present and in the present and fullyopen to His will. I love this as now I know where He wants my focus to be and improve upon. Thanks for sharing.


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