Do you choose a word or Bible verse to focus on in the new year? I have sometimes chosen a word, but I have never chosen a Bible verse before. I did choose one this year however, and I want to teach you how to choose one, too.
One of the concerns I hear most frequently from my readers is the need for more Jesus in their lives and selecting a Bible verse to focus on for the year ahead is one way to bring His Spirit into your life in a real, tangible way.
Whether you choose a verse from the Old Testament or the New Testament, the passage you choose will help you to memorize and meditate on the Word of God throughout the months ahead. It will allow The Lord to speak into your heart and allow you to be more aware of His leadings. It will provide structure to your thoughts and give you a center to come back to time and again.
Considering a Bible Verse for the New Year
Your Word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path. – Psalm 119:105 (NLT)
When you select a key Bible verse for the new year, you can rest assured that God will guide you and grow you in that area.
Perhaps you are frequently conflicted, confused, and anxious. Maybe Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10) would be good for you.
Maybe you are struggling with a bad habit or an addiction. Then you might want to choose if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Maybe you feel tired, weak, and weary. In that case, you might need to run and not grow weary, walk and not be faint (Isaiah 40:28-31 - It's long, but powerful. You could choose some subset of the passage.)
That's not to say that you need to be struggling to choose a focus Bible verse for the new year!
Maybe things are generally good but you want to be intentional about working on your marriage. In that case, love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres (1 Corinthians 13:4-7).
Maybe you want to work on doing more community service and giving more of yourself to your family, church, or a cause. You might want to focus on whatever you did for the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40).
Maybe you want to focus on having a healthier body in the new year. You could focus on offering your body as living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God (Romans 12:1-2).
My point in offering these suggestions is not that you need to choose among them. My point is that the Word of God will never fail (Luke 1:37), and you can count on it to guide you into the new year and far beyond.
How to Choose a Focus Bible Verse for the New Year
- First and foremost, you need to pray. Ask God to show you the verses that you should consider. I've included a sample prayer below.
- Next, take a look at the 50 Bible Verses Every Christian Should Memorize. There are a lot of great verses there that will hopefully jump start your thought process, but only look there after you have prayed and asked The Lord to open your eyes to the verse He would have you choose.
Maybe one single verse will jump out to you and you'll be done. Yay! But more than likely, you will have to move on to the next step.
- Third, wait a few days or a week. You probably noticed while reading that list that some verses stuck out to you, but you may be overwhelmed with which one to choose among them. Spend more time in prayer, listen to worship music, write in your journal, read The Word, and listen to sermons online or in person. Look at Bible verse graphics on Pinterest. God will show you what He wants you to focus on.
- Last, take the plunge and choose one verse or passage. You can't go wrong with anything in scripture, especially if you've been praying and asking God to show you what to choose.
What to do once you've chosen your focus verse?
You've chosen your verse, so the hard part is done! Congratulations! But what next?
- Post your verse where you will see it, at least several times a day. I have put together a gorgeous set of Bible verse printables (coincidentally, the same 50 verses that I linked to above!) that you can print and post in your home. Because it's an electronic document, you can print one verse as many times as you want, and you can also play around with your printer settings and make it smaller than a full page if you want to. (Try 2 or 4 PDF pages to a single printable page to do half or quarter sized.) You can also write the verse on an index card or Post-It note to stick to your mirror and in your planner, and you can make it into your computer's screensaver and your phone's lock screen.
- Every time you see the verse, meditate on it. Ask God how He would have you apply that verse or passage to that minute, hour, or day of your life. He will faithfully answer and show you ways to incorporate that theme of the verse in ways you've never previously considered.
By this time next year, you will be amazed at how God has grown your faith through that single Bible passage. I can't wait to celebrate with you and help you to choose another verse next year!
A sample prayer to ask God to show you the right verse
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for the power contained in Your Word; I am so grateful for the wisdom and guidance it holds.
I want to focus more on You in the new year, and I humbly ask you to help me to choose a verse from Your Word that will shape my thoughts, my faith, and my life in the coming year. I trust You to reveal it to me not once but many times so that I will know unequivocally where you want me to grow. I'm excited to learn what You have in store for me.
In Jesus’ precious name,
A Final Word on Choosing a Bible Verse for the New Year
Choosing a focus Bible verse for the year ahead is so much better than choosing a word of the year because it places the emphasis squarely where it belongs: on The Word of God. When you select a verse or passage, you will commit to meditate and grow in that area, and God will be faithful in helping you to stretch yourself.
Who knows - you may even end up in situations you never thought possible! Only God knows what He has in store for you this year!