One Word…

focusbandI’m one of many who choose a word and use it as an anchor point for the year. I usually start thinking about it mid-December, and by the time the end of the year rolls around, I’ve settled on the one word I believe God is whispering to me that could shape not only my year, but also me.

It is an exercise I’ve challenged hundreds of others with. Our entire church participated one year… my wife and my daughters have done it the past several years… and I have the privilege of speaking at chapel tomorrow morning where I’m going to challenge the entire high school student body and teachers to each choose a word or short phrase that gives them a compass for 2015.

In years past, my words have been

  • dance
  • hope
  • trust
  • present
  • abide
  • joy

To say I jump “all in” with this concept might be an understatement. I create a collage with my word… I choose a theme Bible verse to accompany my word… I do a Bible search with all the verses that contain my word, and use it for study throughout the year… I spend a couple hours researching quotes from others that pertain to my word… I put an image with my word as the wallpaper on my phone… I wear a bracelet with my word on it… I even write my word on my golf ball when I play. It just helps remind me who I want to be and how I want to live.

For 2105, my word is FOCUS. I have the unique opportunity of starting a new venture, and I really need to focus. Combine that with my natural tendency to say “yes” to too many opportunities, and focus becomes even more critical. Tim Elmore wrote about “rivers and floods,” reminding me that I can do anything (through Christ), but I can’t do everything. I need to be a river, not a flood. Tim said it this way… “When water flows in one direction like a river, it’s useful. But when it spreads out everywhere like a flood, it can cause great damage.”

Hebrews 12:2 is my accompanying verse:“…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus…”

In 2014, I was one of thousands who took the “ice bucket challenge.” For 2015, I challenge you to consider one word. It’s a powerful tool in my life, and I trust it will be for you as well. As you choose it, I’ll love to know about it.


P.S. – the company I get my bracelet from is called MudLOVE. They use 20% of all their sales to provide clean water in Africa. You can check them out at

Mark Jevert

– Creative Strategist –
– committed hubby and devoted dad to three adult girls
– veteran youth work missionary
– passionate follower of Jesus