One Word 2013: LISTEN

One Word Listen Post Image

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.”

Steven R. Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

In 2011, simplicity was the word God impressed on me.  He challenged me to live in the beauty of an uncluttered life.  One of the most important lessons I learned is this: The key to simplicity isn’t looking around and seeing less stuff … it’s looking in and being content.

In 2012, discipline was my focus.  From personal time with the Lord to managing my home, I explored the idea of being disciplined in my life.  My favorite post from last year was 10 Tips for a Great Quiet Time.

This year’s word will present an entirely new challenge:  Listen.


  1. To give attention with the ear; attend closely for the purpose of hearing; give ear.
  2. To pay attention; heed; obey.

To give attention with the ear.  My desire is to train myself to listen well to others—in my home, at my church, with my friends, in my community.   As Covey said, to listen with the intent to understand rather than the intent to respond.

To pay attention; heed; obey.  In addition to learning to listen well to others, I also am focusing on listening better to the Lord.   I long to spend more of my quiet time listening, to grasp the fullness of verses like this:

Be still and know that I am God.

Psalm 46:10

I’ll be sharing my listening journey with you on Mondays this year … and inviting you to join me in listening challenges on the last Monday of each month.

Do you have a “one word” this year?  If so, what is it?

{Special thanks to my sweet friend Melanie for making the lovely button of my one word! She’s the awesome sauce, for real!}

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Read the Psalms this summer with Scripture Dig!


  1. My word also is LISTEN. I really need to work on this skill. I want to LISTEN to God and get to know His heart, and I want to listen to others without spending the time thinking about my response. To reallly focus and listen. I have been bouncing between the two words, but I think they go together. I look forward to your blogs!

  2. This is exactly what I spoke about in anger management this morning. Active Listening. Learning to not only hear the words but listen to the point of complete understanding of that other person’s perspective, their thoughts, their feelings…not just get ready to make our next point. I catch myself doing this with God in my quiet time some days. I come to Him with my requests and needs and wants and gripes…etc., and then wrap it up never having shut up long enough to hear Him speak to me through His word. I want Him to tell me the answers but don’t listen when He speaks. And when I do hear…I’m already questioning before He has a chance to further direct. So my word for this year would probably be “move”. No more questioning just more moving. 2011…”break my heart for what breaks yours”. 2012…”prepare me for your will”. 2013…”use me Lord, for I am yours”.

  3. I love your One Word for 2013. If I didn’t already have my One Word, I would have taken yours as well. I think it’s wonderful! My One Word for this year is “LOVE”, as in to Love each person where they are, not where I think they ought to be. And to be genuine with my love, so that everyone person knows that I genuinely care for them.

  4. I think you hit the nail on the head with your Covey quote at the beginning. Most people do NOT listen with the intent to understand. Kudos to you for focusing in on this for 2013!

    My word is “Harmony”. I posted about it today and have already concluded: Dang. It’s hard!
    Diane Rivers recently posted…The Question I’m Asking MyselfMy Profile

  5. I really love how you shared your previous two words. “Listen”, what a word! And what a wonderful word to continue the growth the Lord has already had with your previous two words. So excited for how the Lord will continue your growth in this New Year!


  1. […] As the closing credits scrolled across my iPad and I listened to the gentle snores of the man who thinks I’m beautiful even with my scary morning hair and scarier morning breath, I whispered a prayer of wonder at this life I live.  It’s amazing really … that the God of all creation looked down on me and said, “I choose her for my own.”  And while simply being His would have been gift enough, He is truly the lavish Giver and granted me a life rich with love and laughter, with family and friends, with opportunities and ministry, with dreams and desires. […]

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