Word For 2018: Read

The new year has begun, so it’s time to elect a new word to guide me through it. In the past, I’ve used ‘joy’ and ‘now’ as the focus, which fit well with my goals for that particular year. For 2018, I’ve chosen the word ‘read’ as my theme.

I’ve always been a streaky reader. I’ll get on a tear, reading books at a fast clip for a few weeks. Then I won’t touch a book for months. I used to think that I must be too distracted by life, just or didn’t know what to read next. But now I think that the reason is a lot simpler than that. Reading just wasn’t a priority.

I want 2018 to be different. I want to turn over a new leaf. (See what I did there?)

There’s just something inside me that’s crying out to learn – to gain an understanding of different perspectives on faith, life, love and even history. For example, my husband and I just saw the movie “The Darkest Hour”. I came away from that film wanting to read more about Winston Churchill. Have I made time to do that? Nope. Now really, that needs to change.

Reading is fundamental to a robust spiritual life too. I have my own ideas about God and how he influences my life. But there are two good reasons to open myself up and seek more knowledge.

Cultivating a Deeper Spirituality

Experts in their fields don’t get there by living in a world of their own. Scientists, medical doctors and car mechanics know if they are going to advance in their practice, they have to read the latest research. If they want to serve well, their knowledge base has to keep advancing.

I want to be the best follower of Christ that I can be. In order to do that, I can’t stay locked in a little box of my own ideas. I have been given the bible, and wonderful books and articles by theologians, writers, and bloggers. They are a priceless source of wisdom, nudging me to create an ever evolving, deeper relationship with Jesus.

Others Will See What I Believe

No man is an island. What I believe and how I life that faith affects other people around me.

If I want to be a positive influence not only to myself, but to the community too, I’m going to need support and encouragement. Reading uplifting and inspirational spiritual literature will give me the boost I need. It’s a reliable way to fill up my soul’s gas tank, giving me the strength to be a peaceful presence. A person who can then support and encourage others.


I’m looking forward to this year of reading, both on my own, and in group studies too.

To kick off the “group study” part of the year, I have joined with Linda on her blog to discuss the book “Invitation to Solitude and Silence: Experiencing God’s Transforming Presence.” You can get the particulars here. Anyone can join in, so check out the link if you’d like to do some reading this year too!

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52 thoughts on “Word For 2018: Read

  1. I love this, Ceil, and I will join you in this goal to read more. I think for me, I get too absorbed in social media and yet, I have tons of books at my reach that I haven’t read! I like the idea of a word for the year, and I am choosing contentment. My husband and I are facing his retirement sooner than expected, and I know there are changes ahead we must adjust to. Being content with whatever comes our way, content in knowing God is in control, is bringing me peace. Sometimes I get caught up in this changing storm, but His word reminds me to be content in Him.

    • Hi Laurie! Thank you for wandering over today, it’s so nice to see you here πŸ™‚

      My husband retired from the business world early too, so I get the whole challenge of change. Your word for the year is a great goal and reminder of where you want to be. Blessings on you and your husband for a peaceful transition.

      Blessings to be content in Him!

  2. Ceil,

    I can’t put into words how much I LOVE that lightbulb book photo at the top. Wow!

    And the quote at the bottom: Inhale the future, exhale the past. How powerful that is!

    I hope you enjoy your reading journey. I clicked over to your friend’s page and saw a link to an article I read yesterday, How to Sit at the Table With Those Who Have Hurt and Offended You. It was so fabulous. If you haven’t read that one yet…woo, what a way to start a reading journey.

    You didn’t ask for suggestions, but… πŸ˜‰ … if you want to slip into another world and take a trip you’ll never forget, Dune.

    Take Care,



    • Hi Sandi! What an oversight on my part. Of course I should have asked for suggestions, thank you for yours. I’ll look it up at my library! And I’ll ask for book suggestions on my FB page this Thursday. Thank you so much for giving me that idea.

      I didn’t take that photo with the lightbulb, it’s a stock photo. But I sure thought it was perfect. Light through the written word. Beautiful! I’m glad you checked out Linda’s page! I didn’t read that link, again thank you for the suggestion. Your comment is really encouraging me today!
      Have a peaceful night,

  3. Ceil: Reading is a research tool and can be an emotional outlet for me.Each year I try to keep a list of the books I read. Since I had issues with my resources for which I reviewed book, I didn’t read as much last year and I didn’t keep a list. This year I a going to do better about that. I have a list of books I would like to read and I also am rereading books that have sat on my bookshelf for several years. Blessings as you read.

    • Hi Cecelia! I can understand how difficult and busy last year was, you mentioned on your blog that the road to publication isn’t an easy one.

      I think rereading books we’ve loved in the past is such a great idea. I think my perspectives have changed over the years, so it would be fun to reread and see what else I get out of the material. Keeping lists is a good thing too!
      Have a peaceful night,

  4. I love how your word of the year will cause you to be intentional n broadening your mind. Read is such a good word. I admire people who read multiple books but I know that’s not me.

    I love to read but I enjoy other things too. Im interested in knowing how your journey with reading goes this year. I am still deciding whether to join Linda. I know I would love it but don’t want to set myself up for failure.

    • Hi Mary! I get that making a commitment to reading is not for everyone. It sure wasn’t for me, I’ll tell you that. But I want to be intentional and true to my word, so I plunged right into Linda’s study. If I see you there, that’d be great, but if not, no worries.

      Here’s to a growing mind in 2018 πŸ™‚

  5. I find that when my inspiration well is running empty, all I need to do is read, too! I love your word for the year, and I look forward to all of the amazing insights and inspirations you receive from your reading, Ceil! God bless you in this new year!

    • Hi Cheryl! I’m not sure I’ll have amazing insights, but I can always hope! Of course I’ll share what I can, I think that’s what we’re all here for, to share our faith and support and resources. We’re all on our way, and need each other to get to the Lord and holiness.

      God bless you too my friend, may 2018 be the year of peace you so desire,

  6. Ceil, I love your word for the year, and I’m so excited that you will be joining in Linda’s book club – I am, too!
    I tend to spend more time reading blogs than books. Your post here today reminded me that I, too, need to spend more time in literature, spiritual inspiration and, of course, the Bible.

    • Hi Martha! Cool beans! It’ll be so nice to see you and hear your insights on the book next month. We have our reading assignment for the first week, and I can’t wait to dive in!

      I suppose I read more blogs too, I guess I didn’t think about how the time is separated. I just know I need to take more time to read, read, read. I can’t wait to make the time to get going on that!
      Have a peaceful night my friend,

  7. What a great word for the year! I agree, reading is something that can easily slip unless we make it a priority. And we can learn so much from reading about people’s different experiences and perspectives. I’m joining in the book study with Linda too so look forward to reading some of your reflections on the book!

    • Hi Lesley! That’s so great my friend! I can’t wait to share ideas about the book too, and read what you’ll have to say. I think it’s a great way to create community and learn all at the same time. I’m ready to start the book this week πŸ™‚ I hope it will fill us both with grace and understanding.

      Have a peaceful night,

  8. You know I love your word! Reading is a great pleasure for me, whether fiction or non-fiction. Often times a fiction book will spark my interest in a real life event and cause me to seek out more information. Love to Read!!!
    I hope your year of reading brings much fulfillment and growth in your spiritual life, Ceil. Blessings~

    • Hi Anne! I know that you are such a huge reader, reviewing so many different books. I agree that books can be so inspirational, and I look forward to being inspired!

      Thank you for your prayer for me. I hope the same for you too!

  9. Hi Ceil! Reading is a wonderful pastime. Even though I truly enjoy reading, I seem to get distracted and not get much accomplished at times. However, I do seem to spend a large chunk of my reading time in the Word, so that time isn’t wasted. This year, I’ve already finished three books (one was started in late Dec.); I’ve already started another one. We can learn so much from books! And I find that physical books are so much nicer than the electronic version.

    Happy Reading, my friend!



    • Hi Kim! You reminded me that I really like a printed book too. I have a Kindle but I don’t really download much on it. I enjoy the weight of the book, and putting papers in between the pages that really touched me.

      You are an amazing reader of the Word, I know that from your blogposts. Scripture is among the reading I want to do more of. That certainly is inspirational!
      Have a peaceful night,

  10. Every so often the world brings forth some people who influence the course of history or make the world a better place – Mother Teresa, Gandhi, Winston Churchill. When Britain was on its knees against its enemy Churchill managed to unite the nation and work towards eventual victory. I doubt we have had a better leader in Britain.

    The thing is, Ceil, there are so many books to read and not enough time in one lifetime to read them all. I often wait until they have been made into films then watch them with the subtitles on so I can claim to have read the book. Do you know if they will make the Oxford English Dictionary into a film?

    God bless.

    • Hi Victor! Oh, I know you’re right. There are way more books than I have time in this world. May God direct me to the ones that I will benefit the most from, and inspire me to be a better person.

      Nah. I don’t think the dictionary has a shot at a movie. But who knows??
      Have a peaceful night,

    • Hi Leslie! Thank you so much for your support. It’s so nice to know that you are reading the blog and enjoying it too! You have no idea how much that means to me. It’s so generous of you to take the time to comment πŸ™‚

      Have a peaceful night,

  11. Thanks for sharing the Invitation to Solitude & Silence Book Club with your gang, Ceil! The Welcome Mat is out and I’m ready to roll … and I’m especially happy to have your friends join us for what looks to be an encouraging group of conversations.

  12. I love this! I like to read, and do a lot of it, but I like your emphasis on reading for a purpose. I read too many light easy reads, and want to read more things that teach me, or make me think!

    • Hi Mari! That’s a great goal, I hope you can move toward it this year! I don’t have much against easy reading though. Sometimes that’s exactly what I need after a tough day.

      But your thoughts are more mine for this year. I’d like to learn more, think more. We’ll walk it together?

  13. Reading is my passion, Ceil, so I loved this post! I can while away hours reading, forgetting to cook meals, talk to people, or finish the laundry. I know you will be blessed this year by following God’s nudge to read more.

    I feel God leading me to not only study small passages of His Word but to read through the whole Bible this year, gaining insight into the big picture.

    • Hi Pam! I am a wee bit jealous of your passion! I wish I had that innate push to read, but it’s definitely a goal for this year. I have to push it up the ‘to-do list’.

      Best of blessings on your reading the bible this year, what an amazing goal that is. I wonder how long it will take you to do it?


    • Hi Lux! I like your new avatar, you look so happy and beautiful!

      Nice to meet another streaky reader πŸ™‚ I hope I’ll read books that will move me too, and make me think!

      Have a peaceful afternoon,

  14. I, too, am a streaky reader. Not in your vein though. I find an author I like and I end up trying to read as much of this stuff as I can. I love to read but because of my job I do find a certain type of book is more likely to be read than a random one. Read away Ceil!

    • Hi Bill! I bet you have all kinds of great books you’ve read. If you have any suggestions, I’d love to hear them. (Spiritual ones I mean.)

      I intend to read away! I hope I have fun, and learn new things. That would make my year a bright one.

      Have a peaceful afternoon,

  15. How fun! I too read due to being an information junkie. I receive information through fiction too. Just this morning I brewed my coffee with a cinnamon stick among the beans as a character in a novel I am reading likes her coffee that way! Another great place to connect with readers is through Goodreads. My sisters are avid readers, and I can see the books they are reading to get ideas for my next reads. Happy reading!

    • Hi Lynn! I have gotten emails from Goodreads, and didn’t know exactly how it worked. Sounds like a great place to find books. If you have any suggestions, I’ll be putting up a call for books on FB on Thursday.

      How was that coffee? I love that you tried it because of the book you were reading. You are truly immersed!

      Have a peaceful afternoon,

  16. We ARE on the same path, aren’t we? My year to read. I just responded to your comment on my blog re this about my new “habit” of reading in the morning. What I AM noticing is I am reading deeper, slower and remembering more by reading earlier. Then to make the commitment to do a facebook live once/twice a month about my reading makes me accountable too. Guess I need to be back in school with a strict teacher again. LOL By the way, I really liked the Darkest Hour. Besides the story, the photography style was beautiful.

    • Hi Jean! No kidding. When I read your blogpost, I really related!

      I think you are a much more motivated reader than me though. You always have book suggestions on your blog. I want to be like you this year, and really dig into new books, and as you said, read slower and let the new ideas soak into my hard head πŸ™‚

      Good point on the movie. It was well filmed for sure. It was a real education for me too, and I want to know more!

  17. Good for you, Ceil! My grandmother only graduated from 6th grade but educated herself by reading all kinds of books. She had her own little “library” in her home, and used to say, “These books are like friends to me.” I admire that attitude, and yours!
    My word for 2018 is LOVE. I am asking the Lord to increase my capacity to love,especially those who get on my nerves or are grumpy!

    • Hi Jeanette! Thank you for your supportive words on my way to ‘read’ in the new year. Who can argue with your word? Love is who God is! If you love, you are in Christ and Christ is in you. It’s perfect. The people in your life will benefit greatly from your desire to grow in love.

      Have a great Tuesday πŸ™‚

  18. Such a good word/goal, Ceil. Also to be more open-minded. I love to read, but I’d like to be more intentional about studying, not just reading, God’s Word. I want to read out of a true thirst to learn more about Him. Like you said, to fill up our soul’s gas tank. I wish you the best in reading this year! I look forward to hearing of your progress and what you learn. Love and hugs to you!

    • Hi Trudy! Your goal of reading, well ‘studying’ the Scripture is one I’ve seen a lot for this year. I see that I am not the only one who is hungering for knowledge, and to get closer to the Lord. I think the Holy Spirit is really busy, encouraging us all to a more loving and obedient soul.

      Thank you for your encouragement, and let me offer mine to your worthy goal too. May God bring you all kinds of new insights, as you look for him in his words, and in his people.
      God Bless!

  19. Love your word, READ. I love to read. With teaching Bible Study It seems I barely make time to read other than what I am studying or preparing for. I used that as an excuse but the truth is I just can’t discipline myself enough to tear away from other things that tend to beckon for my attention. My favorite time to sit down and read a book is during the summer when at the beach with family on vacation. I usually read at least two books in a short amount of time. I have always loved to read and need to make more time to expand myself out there with the reading world. My mom always loved to read. Two of my three daughters likes to read. Enjoyed this post and I pray the desire of your heart to read more comes to life dear Ceil. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

    • Hi Cindy! Thank you for your prayer for me, I really appreciate it.
      Teaching Bible Study is a time consuming job, I know that. I was a small group leader for Jeff Cavin’s “Walk Through The Bible” and it was wonderful…but very labor intensive. Maybe now is the time God wants you to lead with reading his words.

      How fun that you and your children love to read. It really is life-expanding. I just need to make a dedicated space for it. Like you, I read a lot for while, and then nothing. I’d like that to change.

      Have a peaceful afternoon Cindy πŸ™‚

  20. Reading truly does open up our eyes to a bigger world. I belonged to a book club for years and was amazed at different interpretations of the same book. I like your 2018 word and can just imagine how it will transform the coming year. I think Winston Churchill is an interesting character. I enjoyed the portrayal of him in The Crown.

    • Hi Mary! I am slowly making my way through Season One of the Crown, and you’re right. John Lithgow is really good. What an amazing person.

      I hope that reading will open my eyes and heart, and help me to be a better follower of Christ. Love book clubs! My summer group is a book reading one, and I do enjoy reading and then discussing the material.

      Hope healing is continuing, and that you are getting stronger!

  21. This is a good goal for the new year. Reading can take us so many places! I’m always encouraging my writing students to read more since it enhances their writing skills. I’m planning on getting into the Word more this year. Can’t go wrong with that, right? Hope you have a good week!

    • Hi Karen! I just got back from visiting the grandchildren and my daughter, so it’s been a great week! I think getting closer to the Word is a wonderful plan for the year. And you aren’t alone. There are a lot of my blog friends who are pledging to do that too.

      Hope you’re having a great week too πŸ™‚

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