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From the Pastor

What’s Your Word for 2018? 
Guideposts recently published a devotion from a woman who asked Jesus each year to give her a new word to focus on for the next twelve months.  For instance, one year He gave her “joy.”  Apparently, God knew that she needed it because throughout that year she ruptured her Achilles tendon, injured her knee and was immobile for months, developed shingles, and her husband was diagnosed with cancer.  Learning to choose joy despite the above difficulties became a lifesaver.  She also learned that although she had no idea how God would use her focus on the “word for the year” to accomplish His purposes in and through her life, she anticipated good things.  She recognized that it may not be necessarily easy, but rich in life lessons. 
We have focused our efforts at Cross Keys on three words over the past couple of years-- Love Grow Serve.  It’s on all our bulletins and newsletters; it is a mainstay on the monitor; and, is posted on the wall in Faith Hall.  But do we really reflect on these three words in our everyday lives?  Or, do we just give them lip service.  What if we concentrated on one of these words for this year?  What if, for this year, as a church family we made a concerted effort to “choose love?”  While naturally we hope that we are already acting in loving ways, we know that this is not always easy. We live in a complicated world whose first instinct is to hate, disrespect, and anger.  We all face the everyday challenges of life, disagreements and unexpected difficulties. But if we all make a deliberate effort to pray about choosing love, talk about choosing love, study God’s love and show love in all that we say and do, we could also anticipate good things.  If we focus on “choosing love” as our first instinct —who knows where God will lead us.  
Even if you are not inclined to “choose love” as your word of the year—consider what God’s word of the year may be for you.  How will God reveal His greatness to you in 2018? 
Have a Blessed New Year!

Pastor Jeff

“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.” (Isaiah 9:2)



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