2016 – The Year I Believed

by | Dec 30, 2016 | personal journey

2016 will go down as the year I believed.

And blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her by the Lord. Luke 1:45 NRSV

This year flew past me like our friend, Brian’s speeding #17 race car. In my mind it should only be about September. But, here we are closing out the year and anticipating the beginning of 2017.

BELIEVE was the word I embraced in 2016.

And, oh, what a word it was. I wrote about it here, and I kept a Christmas ornament hanging in our kitchen all year long to remind me.

Believe in 2016

Little did I know then that BELIEVE would be the word I would cling to when life didn’t make sense. It would be the word I would hold dear when God took me beyond my comfort zone. It would end up being the word that would comfort me when insecurities and uncertainties rose. And, it would be the word that would be present in each of the 366 days of 2016.

I believed God at His Word.

I believed God was in control in this crazy world and in my life.

And, I believed God had the power to heal my brother Steve. My heart rejoices in how He did it.

I also believed God held each of us in the palm of His hand, through broken hearts, through the rocky waters of grief, through uncharted waters, and through times of questioning and confusion.

I believed in what my husband and I could accomplish together… in life and on our tandem bicycle. We biked over 1,500 miles in nine months and completed our third RAGBRAI in July.

RAGBRAI 2016 Dipping in Mississippi

I believed in family, in friendships, and the power of journeying through life together.

And, I believed in the hope of new experiences, the beauty of exciting opportunities, and the promise of fresh starts.

I believed in good when all I could see was bad, happiness when sadness was present, and peace when there seemed to be none.

I also believed God would guide me to wherever He wanted me… in a job, in ministry, in my parenting, in my marriage, and in every part of my life. In which He did powerfully.

2016 was also the year I believed I could change my health for the better, with eating and exercising differently.

This is not to say my belief was perfect.

Because, friend, it wasn’t. All too often my belief was mixed with doubt. But, because of God’s faithfulness and His continued presence, I chose to believe. Some days I did that well. Some days I did not.

But, this one verse continued to inspire me. I won’t go so far as to call in my “life verse,” but with how God revealed it to me nine years ago, it has a vast significance in my life.

I will sing of the Lord’s great love forever; with my mouth I will make your faithfulness known through all generations. Psalm 89:1

Even though nine years have passed since that moment of God’s revelation, this verse is just alive in my life today as it was then. I don’t fully understand it’s meaning yet. Maybe I will once it’s fulfilled.

I believed God's Words would be fulfilled.

I believed God’s Words would be fulfilled.

I’ll keep on believing in its promise. (The above photo was this morning’s sunrise. Cue the heavenly host… Hallelujah!)

Yes, I look forward to a new year, but I rejoice in this one in which we’re about to say goodbye.

Friend, what about you? Did you embrace one word in 2016, and if so, what significance did it have? What did you learn this year about you, about others, or about God? What are you most looking forward to in 2017? I’d love to read your responses below.

I look forward to growing together in God’s grace and love. My one word post for 2017 will be coming next week.




Linking this post with friends Crystal and Deb.

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    • Julie Lefebure

      Agreed, Andrew! I’ll be over to catch up on your writing soon. I appreciate your words and presence here, as always!

  1. Kim

    The number of ways you embraced your word this year is very encouraging to read.

    My 2016 word was Create. I thought it would be a year of getting back into crafting, cooking… maybe something new, but still creative. But no, God had me create space, create deeper relationships, create memories and stronger community with uncomfortable yeses in new experiences, to name a few. This year reinforced my previous words, Share and Light. These had relationship and community connections and Create for me this year was no different.

    Isn’t it funny how God takes us where we think we can’t go? We just have to be open and willing. And with a single word, He can truly impact and transform us deeply.

    • Julie Lefebure

      Wow, Kim, God did create much in you and in your life in 2016. Your words encourage me! Yes, it’s it amazing how God can transform us in ways we never expected. So glad you were open and willing. Do you have a word for 2017? I haven’t figured mine out yet… hoping to soon! Thanks for your continued online support and friendship. May God bless you in this new year! Hugs to you.

  2. Lux G.

    This will be a year of expectant faith for me. 🙂
    Happy 2017!


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