My #OneWord365 for 2013 is…

by Michelle on January 3, 2013

in Learning the Art of Living

2012 was an incredible year.


At some point soon I need to write about all the ways my One Word for the year, LOVE, changed my perspective truly all year long.  I was amazed at how relevant, inspirational, and clearly focused in my mind that one little word continued to be all year.  Life changing.  Seriously.  It kept me focused and helped motivate me in a way that no standard New Year’s Resolution ever did.

Toward the end of the year, I started thinking about what my word for 2013 would be. Just as for 2012, I was pretty sure I had my word.  And then God stepped in and changed it. Again.  Just like last year.  Harumph.   Okay, really, I’m excited about that because it worked out so well last time! I can’t wait to experience this new word’s year of possiblities. :)   Let me tell you how it happened:

I’m cruising through my day, pretty happy with my word for 2013, CREATE….  I’m thinking of all the ways this word will encourage me… to create cleaner eating habits, create simplicity and organization in my home, create art, create a healthier, stronger body, create a legacy of wisdom for my children, create more worship in my daily life, create, create, create…  It was the perfect word…



This other word kept coming up.  And coming up.  And coming up.  Oh wait… There it is again over here, in a conversation with a co-worker.  Oh, and here, talking to my brother…. and here, in something I’m reading… and… *sigh*   Maybe it’s time to admit this is the same thing God did last year… until I finally took notice and chose His word (which I didn’t care for at first) over mine.

I sent my tribe of sister friends a text.
My iPhone autocorrected it, and this is what came out:

“I think God just shanked my One Word.  Again.”

I laughed out loud.  That’s EXACTLY what happened!! He shanked my word, and I grumpily listened to Him and went with his instead:



I have to admit, same as last year, I’m not thrilled with this word.  I know it’s the right one for me for 2013, but it’s SO hard to explain to people.  It’s so complex.  And there is a fair amount of danger of it being taken or used or abused, by me or by someone else.  It sounds so selfish.  It’s so FAR from that though.  How can I explain?

*Sigh*   God never did promise to make things easy, did He?

So, what, exactly do I mean by Permission?

Permission to be my whole self, exactly as I was created to be…

Permission to Let Go and just be ME.

Permission to be calm, and to be strong.

Permission to be quiet, creative, curious, fun, courageous, beautiful.

Permission to worship in the ways that makes my soul sing out to God,

to live to the beat of my own drummer…

Permission to just BE.

What sealed the deal for me about this being the right word for 2013 was this thought that God gave me during a quiet moment:

With the word create, the responsibility to make everything happen rested entirely on my own shoulders.   With permission, the goals are the same, but the process is different.  It’s all about letting go, and resting in the knowledge that God knew what He was doing when he created me.  Failing to embrace my unique quirks, passions, and style not only makes life more difficult than it needs to be, but it’s like telling my creator he didn’t do it right.  How arrogant of me!  How ungrateful.  

So for 2013, I am embracing the idea that I’ve already been granted permission by the creator of the universe…  to be Me.  

*Sigh*… There it is again… That sounds so selfish! Truly, that’s not where my heart is for this year.  As I said earlier, PERMISSION really is a complex and somewhat dangerous word. I want to make sure that my intentions and focus in using it this year stay pure. It’s more that I so often put everyone and everything first, that there’s nothing left for me at the end of the day. Eventually there’s not even enough for them by the end of the day… Permission is about investing in myself, pouring in and filling up my own cup so that I can HAVE something to give others.  KWIM?

I’ve learned and grown and healed so much these last couple of years. I feel like by giving me this word, God is telling me, “I’ve already given you the keys you need… now I’m giving you permission to use them. It’s time, daughter. Be the girl I created.”

Alece Ronzino, the gal behind OneWord365, said to me on twitter: “I can’t wait to hear  you unpack that word…”  That statement really got me thinking.  And as I’ve been trying to figure out how and what to write in this post, I’ve written pages of notes already in a journal about it…

I’m pretty sure “unpacking” this word might just take me all year…





{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Elise Lockamy January 4, 2013 at 6:56 AM

I love it when God “shanks” what I want to do! LOL! The journey is always more fun, and filled with love, when he takes the wheel.

I love that you wrote “permission to be beautiful”. Sometimes I like to hide behind the veil of modesty with both my inner and outer beauty. I will try to exercise beauty this year.

Keeping in the theme of things, I give you permission to check out my One Word post at :)

Have an awesome year!


Michelle January 12, 2013 at 7:53 PM

“The journey is always more fun, and filled with love, when he takes the wheel.” Amen! and so beautifully said! I’m heading over to check out your One word post now. :)


Amy McCollister January 4, 2013 at 8:32 AM

While granting permission looks to be a daunting task, don’t forget to give yourself (others and God) the permission to say no or set limits with things people and commitments. Looking forward to seeing this unfold this year!!


Michelle January 12, 2013 at 7:51 PM


Yes! Permission to say to and set limits is a huge part of this, I totally forgot to write that part. :) Thank you for this comment, btw. You helped me clarify my thinking on explaining this idea even more… It’s about accepting permission that’s already been granted. Thank you!!


Anna January 4, 2013 at 11:50 PM

I love it. love it!! It seems just right. Like yours, my one word is hard to define to people too. But I know it’s exactly the one for me, from Him.

ps- I adore autocorrect!!! That’s awesome!


Michelle January 12, 2013 at 7:52 PM

THanks Anna! Heading over to find out your word now… :)


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: