The beginning of the year sees many people making resolutions, turning a new page, and hoping to make a fresh start. One of the ways many people make a fresh start is by choosing a focus word to help set their intentions for the year. I have had a focus word for the past several years, and find that it’s a better option for me than resolutions because instead of obsessing over and tracking a long list of changes, one word allows me to hone in on the big picture.



I don’t choose the focus word; the word always chooses me. In fact, it seems the harder I try to find a word the more it eludes me. My focus words in years past have been NEW (2016), FOCUS (2017), and RESTORE (2018).

Begin the year with a focus word to set your intentions for 2019.


I had been contemplating what my focus word would be for a few weeks, and on New Year’s Eve while listening to a sermon based on Joshua 1:9 the word that I’d been searching for found me. I was feeling discouraged and afraid and cried out to the Lord about the task He has given me. Not even an hour later, I heard the timely sermon.

Joshua was tasked with leading the children of Israel into the Promised Land after 40 years in the wilderness. In order to enter Joshua had to oust its current inhabitants, fight numerous battles and provide spiritual guidance for the millions of Israelites. Joshua was overwhelmed at the task ahead of him, but the Lord spoke these words of encouragement to him:

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”


While it would seem that since I said that it was based on Joshua 1:9 the focus word is strong or courageous. It is not. My word is strategy/strategic. How did I get strategy from that verse you may ask? Joshua was a soldier; a military leader. In addition to strength and courage, Joshua would need a strategy to gain entry into the Promised Land.

The definition of strategy is:

1. a plan of action designed to achieve a long-term or overall aim.

2. the art of planning and directing overall military operations and movements in a war or battle.

The term is derived from the Greek word for generalship or leading an army. 

There are things that I need to do with respect to this platform that requires not just strength and courage, but God’s presence and divine STRATEGY. A strategy is needed in for many areas of my personal and professional life, as well.

Powerful words of comfort when you’re feeling discouraged and afraid. Joshua 1:9


It makes perfect sense that this is the focus word that found me for 2019.