Most years, I choose one word than a resolution to focus on to start each New Year. In prior years I’ve chosen hope, faith, and peace. With each choice has come a singular area of focus for growth.

My goal came after doing ministry over multiple days, with two different approaches — the second day’s attitude being the healthiest approach, which resulted in no stress, success, and a lot of fun because I accepted the day’s events, no matter the obstacle. Continuing then, my one-word goal tradition in 2020, I choose acceptance.

Here’s the fuller story that led me to this word:

The first day of ministry was met with confusion, miscommunication, reliance on others, and other stressors that put me beyond my element to minister to the group as requested. Fortunately, the primary party never perceived my frustration that I was failing to serve them to the best of my ability. Still, the internal angst I felt personally bothered me, and I feared my stress would make for a miserable next day. To serve the party well, something within me had to change!


At 5:00 a.m. the next day, I awoke, read my Bible, and prayed for a different attitude than the previous day’s approach. Looking back, now I can see that acceptance would be the word to describe the demeanor I hoped to convey. Prayerfully, I wanted to be Spirit-led than Mike-led to accept issues as opportunities graciously. As expected, I was tested.

Vendors throughout the day made last-minute changes. They even gave me side-eyes with whispers to themselves about me. Other participants were rowdy and not on-time. No matter the challenge, graciously by His Spirit, I was able to accept these issues as opportunities than stressors. No, I was not run over by any vendor or participant. Instead, similar to the contrast between Mary and Martha in Luke 10:38-42, I adjusted my attitude to be more like Mary as I “listened” and accepted the circumstances as from the Lord, allowing me to be Spirit-led than Mike-led.

In response, since I didn’t nag the participants, Gospel bonds were built as Christ was appropriately presented. Vendors warmed up to me with genuine compliments towards the work we did together. Also, Christ was beautified before the audience and the primary party. Why? Because by accepting the day’s events without stress allowed room for Jesus to shine than me.

Acceptance is the posture that lets us enjoy life more, trust the Lord, and let His best results shine. 2020 will be a perfect year to train my ability to accept circumstances more. My 2020 will include Army changes, ministry transitions, and more. Having then an accepting attitude will allow me to enjoy these transitions because I hope to trust the Spirit more than my abilities and attitude.

Life is imperfect, and no amount of striving for perfection changes the fact that problems will arise. We can choose to stress over our concerns. Worry is another fruitless approach. Even those of us who are expert planners and life strategists can’t anticipate every future obstacle. Therefore, we should accept and embrace faith as a part of our approach, especially faith in Christ. Each of us will utilize some faith to respond to 2020’s unknown obstacles; let’s then accept faith in the greatest eternal and practical hope of all, Jesus.

In 2020, acceptance is my one-word goal, which might be the most challenging yet. However, progress in this area will be more beneficial than any prior year’s goal. The results will make me a better Christian and minister. Plus, I believe I’ll experience more peace than ever in my life: a peace that displays a deeper trust in God’s Sovereignty over accepting the circumstances God gives than what I want.

What’s your one-word goal in 2020? Are you ready to accept the one-word challenge this year? Let’s accept this challenge together!

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