"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence,
if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things."
January 2014 was the first year I chose a word for the year, and the word was COURAGE. Every year since, I have chosen a word or sometimes two. I don’t have a formula, but most of the words I chose were a combination of what I want in the New Year and what I want to leave in the prior year.
For 2017. I chose ABUNDANCE. It is unlike any word I have chosen in previous years. In the last couple of years, I have gone with words like COURAGE, BOLDNESS, GRIT, FREEDOM and GUTS. But this year, I wholeheartedly dove into abundance, because on December 20th, 2016, I wrote this sentence in my journal, “I have a limiting belief that the many things I want to do and wish to be are impossible for me, because I don’t have the funds or what it takes.” Right after I added a period to the end of that sentence, a light bulb turned on in my head and I came to a sad realization — I have scarcity mentality — I operated quite frequently from the idea that I don’t have, and therefore I can’t. My behavior over the past years is consistent with the conviction that success is not replicable and opportunities are limited. I carry within me a belief that I can’t dream too big, least I get disappointed like I had been in the past. Therefore, I manage my expectations and get exactly what I expect…trickles and drips.
This realization made me cringe, because I detest selling myself short, and scarcity mentality is selling myself short. Thankfully, awareness pushed me to take a hard look at myself, and I saw fragments of this mentality braided into my life. You see, I have spent a significant part of the last few years striving and hustling, and it is what entrepreneurs do or are suppose to do. We go, and we go hard, and while my mind focused on fighting for my dreams and compensating for my lack, I missed out on the many blessings that flowed my way and into my life. I was looking down and behind a lot , but not up and certainly, not ahead.
Hence, I was weary.
A sense of exhaustion assailed me.
I was drained
I pondered over this revelation through the rest of December, and the key thought marinating within my pondering was, “What if I could focus on abundance and operate from that mindset instead? If there is a scarcity mentality, there’s got to be an abundance mentality, and I want a part of it.” I desire an abundance of joy, peace and love, and abundance in my finances, family, career, relationship, and in my friendships. I also certainly desire abundance in wisdom and faith. I was pretty sure an abundance of challenges was not on my list, but if God sees it fit for this year, then I want to set my mind on an abundance of breakthrough and victory to go side by side with it. This isn’t entirely about wealth; it was about having a mind that operated in freedom and possibilities instead of being shackled to fear and limitations.
However, I was left with one challenge. How do I switch my mind from scarcity to abundance mentality? It was the million-dollar question I kept asking. The answer was quite simple, and it came to me one morning while I was praying about something else. You see, a simple sentence had found its way into my prayers about three years ago, and I prayed it quite often in 2016. I prayed that I'll always set my eyes, gaze, heart and mind on Christ. Over the holiday, I prayed it with such intensity and frequency that I literally prayed my way into questioning God, “Okay, God, what the hell does it mean to set my mind on Christ? I have been praying this for a while, I get it, but what does that actually look like in reality and in the day to day of my life?”
And with as much intensity as I prayed and asked that question, I was reminded of a few scripture verses.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning…The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” [1st John 1-14 NIV]
“Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” [Romans 1:2- NLT]
The Message version translates part of this verse in Romans as, “…Don’t become so well adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out.”
I pondered over these truths some more and quickly realized setting my eyes and mind on Christ is to set my eyes on the Word of God. The only way to transform my mind, my thinking and my mentality is to set it on Christ, because God is Christ and Christ is the Word. It dawned on me that I couldn’t transform my mind from scarcity to abundance if I didn’t change where I set my mind and what I fixated on. In essence, transformation requires a first step, sitting my butt in the living, active and powerful word of God. It was mind blowing for me in the moment, but I realized that this was the practical application of the prayer I had prayed for three years. Honestly, this is fundamental to Christianity, but these simple truths have the tendency to blow my mind.
But then I had more questions, because I had indeed made it a point to spend time in prayer and in the word every morning for the last couple of years. It left me wondering why I was stuck on scarcity lane when I had made morning devotion and praying huge parts of mornings for the past four years. The answer to that pondering found its way to me the morning of January 1st, 2017, and I’ll be sharing what the answer is in another post.
Wait! Before you go, leave a comment and let me know if you chose a word for 2017?
If yes, what is it and why did you choose it?
I'll love to hear from you.
PS: You are Immensely Loved!