January 12, 2023

A Plan for the New Year by Steph Beth Nickel

 Many people choose a Word of the Year. Do you?

Optionally, you may want to choose a Phrase and/or a Verse of the Year.

This year, God dropped both a phrase and a verse into my life.

I first came across my Phrase of the Year in a devotional in one of the Facebook groups I belong to. 

The phrase: Simple, Not Easy

Often, what we're called to do, even what we want to do, is simple, 

especially if we break it down into bite-sized tasks.

However, it's rarely easy.

That's where my Verse of the Year comes in.

In the NIV, Proverbs 16:9 says,

"In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps."

I have several simple goals for 2023.

Like many of us, I want to...

1. Get more exercise and eat more healthfully.

2. Write and publish more.

3. Read more books.

4. Be more supportive of my friends and family.

5. Do more to point people to Jesus.

There are many simple things I can do in each of these areas.

Plus, it's my responsibility to set achievable goals and follow through.

But we all know...

Life doesn't always go as planned.

We have to trust the Lord to establish our steps...

Even when those steps don't take us along the path we expected them to.

What is your Word or Phrase of the Year?

Do you have a Verse of the Year that you're focusing on?

Let's encourage one another by sharing them in the comments.


  1. Thank you, dear Steph. I love hearing what other people have chosen for their word or verse of the year.
    Your verse and list for the year are applicable for all of us.
    My word is generous. I'm only beginning to learn what God means for me in this word. I believe He's asking me to give and recieve more generously. Both are challenging. Both hold huge potential for two-way blessing. Both glorify God.
    Blessings for 2023.

  2. Thanks for reminding us of the word, phrase and/or scripture of the year, Steph. "Simple, not easy," is a good one, and it's always wise to keep in mind specific goals and God's Word to us, such as Proverbs 16:9.
    My words/phrases/scriptures keep changing all the time, so I'll continue to let things morph, let God speak to me, and keep track throughout the year. I'll then look back at the end of 2023 to see where/how God has led me.

  3. Hi Steph! Like Sandi, my words/phrases/scriptures also keep changing. One short phrase I am concentrating on is, "keep physically active.: I have been dealing with health challenges this past year. I am taking life day by day right now with hopes I can build up my strength again. I will also keep my writing active as my energy permits. Praise God for our health! Blessings to you, Steph, as you make your way through 2023.

  4. My phrase is "Feed My Sheep" inspired by one of Grace Fox's keynotes at Fall Conference.


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