In 2014 a friend encouraged me as the year was coming to an end to ask God for a word that would describe my coming year. I’d  spent 2014 pretty much wanting to jump off the dames point ( figuratively, not literally ) and as the year ended I was just hoping for some reprieve. As I prayed I immediately heard the word RESTORE. I of course balled my eyes out because I’d just lost my grandmother and the years that preceded and the months that followed that moment were filled with some pretty significant shaking and loss. I entered 2015 with that word on my heart and I watched God do some serious work. 2015 was filled to the brim with God restoring my faith, my home, my passions and as the year ended I prayed for a new word. I immediately heard RENEW! Of course I was stoked, restore was awesome and now RENEW? ERRRRMERRRGERRRSH its gonna be an awesome year of God making new the things that didn’t get restored! That’s what I thought, and that was my expectation. But on New Years Eve, because God has JOKES He pulled an audible. As I sat on my couch folding underwear I heard His still small voice say, “Chari, if I changed your word would you be okay with that?” I, of course said,  “SURE!” As quickly as I said sure He responded, “Great…LISTEN!”   [INSERT AWKWARD TURTLE MOMENT HERE]   [BEGIN INNER CRAZY DIALOGUE HERE]  

OH HECK, NA! I’m sorry God, what? Which is my word? GREAT or LISTEN??? Are you FLIPPING kidding me? Did you just switch my word from RENEW to LISTEN? Is this suppose to be funny? Your not funny! I don’t think your funny.”
Once I finished my crazy rant everything went silent. I assumed He’d immediately start talking, that He had some massive revelation He wanted to drop. But He’d already dropped it when He gave me my word for the year. See, listening isn’t meant to be something you do, or something you put into practice after God starts speaking. Listening is an inward response, a constant awareness that He is always speaking all day, everyday. It’s truly living spirit-led, which if I am honest I thought I was doing! But just when that thought surfaced He spoke and reminded me that I will never arrive, the goal is to abide! And that is what I plan on doing even more this year. Feel free to join me in my word, or ask Him for yours. I’d love to hear your thoughts, or perhaps what your word is.  ( Comment below ) Here’s to listening even more intently in 2016! xo Chari    ]]>