What Will Satisfy My Soul in 2016?

Choosing “fruit” as my One Word for 2015 was a game changer for me.

My daily practice of praying for the fruit of the Spirit to grow in the hearts of every person in my house ushered in an acute awareness of how these lovely character traits function (or not) in my own life. It was convicting, to say the least, but also inspiring to see how God answered those prayers throughout the year.

satisfied

When the time came to choose a new word for 2016, I thought about zeroing in on a single piece of the fruit of the Spirit. I still have room for improvement with all nine—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control—so I could hardly go wrong with any of them.

Even as I was mulling over these attributes, though, the word “satisfied” kept popping up. I dismissed it at first, because it didn’t seem all that relevant. I’m generally pretty content, and I wanted a word with more immediate application to my life.

Then the month of December wore on and I became increasingly frustrated (some might say obsessed) with relatively insignificant things that normally don’t bother me.

My hair (mostly my inability to find an affordable stylist who can cut it exactly how I want it, every time). Finding the perfect sweater/top/tunic for special Christmas events. The way the pounds seem to be redistributing themselves on my middle-aged body. My ever-increasing reliance on my reading glasses.

Shallow, I know. But after devoting an entire morning to fretting about the aforementioned hair issue, I realized that maybe I’m not as content as I thought.

The Song of the Month I shared a few days ago sealed the deal. After listening to Jordan Feliz sing this moving ballad a half a dozen times, I knew.

My One Word for 2016 had to be “satisfied.”

Notice I didn’t say “self-satisfied.” My word has nothing to do with being complacent, lackadaisical or smug.

It’s all about contentment—not with the clothes I wear, what I look like, what anyone else does (or doesn’t do) or what I’m able to accomplish, but in God alone. Expressed in verse form, it looks like this:

“Who do I have in heaven but You? And I desire nothing on earth but You. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart, my portion forever.” (Psalm 73:25-26)

When this kind of satisfaction infiltrates my world, I can rejoice more easily with those who rejoice. I can wait prayerfully for God to open doors instead of trying to drum up opportunities on my own.

I can embrace whatever season I’m in without longing for the good old days or wishing for some ideal future scenario. I can do my best with the gifts God has given me and trust that He will use my efforts for His glory—no matter the size or scope of the outcome.

I want all this to be true in my life, but I can’t make it happen on my own. So Psalm 90:14 is now my daily prayer—for me and for the others in my home:

“Satisfy us in the morning with Your faithful love so that we may shout with joy and be glad all our days.”

No matter the season, no matter the circumstances, no matter the struggle, He is enough.

Only by His grace can I live like I truly believe this.

And only then will my soul be satisfied.

Lois Flowers

P.S. I’m linking up this week with Dawn Klinge at Grace & Truth, Lyli Dunbar at #ThoughtProvokingThursdayKelly Balarie at Purposeful Faith, Jennifer Dukes Lee at #TellHisStory Holley Gerth at Coffee for Your Heart.



26 Responses to What Will Satisfy My Soul in 2016?

  1. Sandra J says:

    Lois – Well, I’m two weeks after your post – but I just have to say I love your honest reflection, your word and verse choice, and your beautiful post! In your post you mention that you want contentment/satisfaction to ‘infiltrate’ your life – so that you can embrace each season you are in. Wow – appreciate your example, too (bad hair days – been there, doing that!). Thanks!

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Oh Sandra … you know what? I’ve been doing OK so far with being satisfied this year, but today? It’s actually been a bit of a mental battle! Then I took a little nap, woke up with some new perspective and saw your comment. I don’t know if it’s the Holy Spirit reminding me of the truth or what, but yes … I’m still in need of that infiltration, maybe more than ever! Thank you for your kind words … they were definitely the encouragement I needed today!

  2. Lois, I LOVE that scripture. So beautiful. I often pray it for myself in the mornings. (After I read that John Piper did. 🙂 ) I like your word Satisfied. So important to cultivate contentment, yet so challenging.

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Betsy, I didn’t know I was following John Piper’s example. 🙂 Working to cultivate contentment is definitely challenging, but so freeing too, I think. I hope you have a wonderful 2016!

  3. Jerralea says:

    You’ve inspired to me pray for the fruits of the spirit to be more evident in the lives of my family – I actually hadn’t thought to pray that specifically.

    I love your word “satisfy.” Only in Him can we truly be satisfied.

  4. Jedidja says:

    Amen! “No matter the season, no matter the circumstances, no matter the struggle, He is enough.” I agree. And I love your One Word. May God help you wit that.

  5. Happy New Year, Lois! Love the word you chose (or that chose you!) and am looking forward to reading more as you unpack this topic in the weeks ahead. Blessings 🙂

    • Lois Flowers says:

      The work’s already begun, Lyli, and trust me … it’s making me squirm a bit. But I guess if it didn’t, what would be the point, right? Happy New Year to you, too!

  6. June says:

    I love how your word came about, Lois, and the God is already working in unexpected ways! My word is “new” based on Isaiah 43:19, and it is the same word I was given last year. God is not finished with it/me yet. Blessings to you!

    • Lois Flowers says:

      June, Isaiah 43:19 is one of my absolute favorite scriptures … I love it so much it’s framed and hanging in my stairwell! And although I have a new word for 2016, I’m not done with my word from last year, either … still praying for the fruit of the Spirit to grow in my heart every day. 🙂 Here’s to trusting that God will keep doing those new things in us … in His ways and according to His timetable!

  7. Joanne Viola says:

    Wonderful post & word for 2016. Each time I read about someone’s one word, I am amazed how each word truly becomes a journey. My word this year is “See” because I want to “Taste & see that the Lord is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!: (Ps. 34:8). May your soul be increasingly satisfied in & through Him in 2016. Blessings!

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Joanne, I’m so intrigued by what makes different people choose different words. I especially like it when there’s a verse that goes along with a word, because I can’t help but believe that God will make that truth come alive for that person. I hope your year is full of great joy, just as your verse promises! Thank you for your kind words today. 🙂

  8. Laura Crosby says:

    I love the 2015 word, “fruit”! Although my word for 2015 was “stronger”, I forgot it as my younger brother got cancer and we walked with him through his journey to life with Jesus. Still, looking back, God was at work using that word, making me stronger in love, and faith.
    This year I’m cheating and choosing “adventurously expectant” from the Message translation of Romans 8:15. Here’s to a 2016 with Jesus, the satisfier of our souls!

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Laura, I’m so sorry about the loss of your brother. What comfort it must be to look back and see how God was at work with your word, even when you felt anything but strong. I love Romans 8:15 (partly because I’m an adoptive mama myself) and the phrase you’ve chosen for 2016 is perfect! Blessings to you today!

  9. Lois, what a great word to meditate on for 2016! And it’s one that seems so elusive for many of us. I’ve definitely had my struggles with discontentment, and over some of the same issues you named. 🙂

    But I LOVED your closing lines:
    “No matter the season, no matter the circumstances, no matter the struggle, He is enough.

    Only by His grace can I live like I truly believe this.”.

    May we both learn to live like He truly is enough for us. This has been a recurring theme in my own life too. 🙂

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Thanks for your encouraging words today, Jeanne … It sounds like we operate on some of the same wavelengths! 🙂 As the old hymn says, “Oh for the grace to trust him more” this year!

  10. Lauren says:

    Fruit was a great theme for 2015 (sounds like it was quite “fruitful” excuse the pun) and I really like your word for 2016 as well…. Being satisfied sounds so simple and yet so hard at the same time! Your last few lines remind me of Chris Tomlin’s song “Your Grace is Enough”

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Lauren, I totally agree about how being satisfied sounds simple but is actually hard. At the same time, I’ve been surprised at how I’ve already been able to put it into practice in tangible ways … I wasn’t necessarily expecting that! Grace and peace to you today!

  11. Thank you so much for sharing this post with such authenticity.

    I love hearing how the Lord is working in other people’s lives and appreciate when they share those workings with others. Iron sharpening Iron, spurring one another one, encouraging each other in the faith.

    Trusting that you will find all your satisfaction in Him in 2016. 🙂

  12. Trudy says:

    Thank you, Lois, for this encouragement to have our satisfaction in God. May He satisfy us with His faithful love! This line grasped my heart with longing – “I can do my best with the gifts God has given me and trust that He will use my efforts for His glory—no matter the size or scope of the outcome.” Thank you for this hope-filled reminder.

  13. Linda Stoll says:

    ah yes, to find our satisfaction and fulfillment in Christ. what joy and victory to be in that place.

    and I love this idea of praying for the fruit of the Spirit to be evident in the lives of those we love. what a beautiful release, to allow God to choose how He’ll bring that to pass.

    what a lovely mid-winter visit this is today, friend. so very good.

    • Lois Flowers says:

      “To allow God to choose how He’ll bring that to pass.” Linda, that’s huge! It’s not me directing who needs what and how, but God. A beautiful release indeed. Thank you for these wise words today … as always! 🙂

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