It is the second week of January, how are you doing with your resolutions and plans for 2018? This year I decided to be kind to myself and ease into the New Year, you can learn more about that in my  Happy New Year!. After a hectic holiday season, and wanting to linger in the remaining days of 2017, I had no choice. 2018 came in with a roar!

Through prayer and thoughtful meditation with the Lord, one word has come up over and over, and I believe it is my one word for 2018. Presence not to be confused with presents, although it can be a gift.

My first encounter with the word presence came as I was reading through the book of Jonah. Jonah is more than just a story of a man and a big fish. Jonah is the story of a man with a calling on his life who tries to run away from his destiny and hide from God.

Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying,  “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and call out against it, for their evil has come up before me.” But Jonah rose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. – Jonah 1:1-3 ESV

Jonah gets a word from God.  God doesn’t need Jonah to fulfill his plan, but the Lord graciously chooses to use Jonah to fulfill his divine purposes. How cool is that? Jonah knows exactly what his calling is and why he is here on this earth!  And what does Jonah do? He runs the other way! He tries to flee the very presence of the Lord.

Does he think there is a place he can go where the Lord can’t find him? Maybe a more poignant question would be… do we think we can run and hide from God?

Psalm 139:8 is clear,

If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!

Hiding from God is a futile exercise, HE is intimately acquainted with us. He sees our heart and knows our sin. We can’t run and we can’t hide!

Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you. – Deuteronomy 31:6 ESV

God is with us. Our Heavenly Father lavishly loves us and is ever present in our lives.  I don’t ever want to take that for granted. Instead, I want to fully embrace my calling but in order to do that first.

Find theBeard that Suits You-2


Before I can pour out my cup to anyone, my husband, my children, my neighbors, friends or blog readers my cup must be filled first by the only one who can fulfill the deepest longings within my soul, so that I have something to share with others. This requires me to linger in the presence of the most Holy and be filled.

Over and over the word, presence kept coming up. And questions filled my mind.

  • How often am I distracted during my quiet time?
  • When I am with others am I fully present, or am I thinking about something else?
  • Where am I in this present moment? Am I fully here?

Am I distracted by the device in my hand, or am I present with the ones I love.


The Antonym of Presence

Absence is the opposite of presence. If I am praying and my mind wonders I am absent. If I am having dinner with my family and we are all mindlessly scrolling on our phones than I am absent. If I am talking with a friend, but thinking about my to-do list, then I am most certainly absent!

Sometimes in order to be more present, we must be careful to choose our absence, as I was so gently reminded today by Emily P Freeman on her podcast The Next Right Thing. I may have to let go of good things, in order to have time for the best things.

My desire for this year is to be aware of my presence and to live intentionally and with purpose. Choosing to linger long in the Word of God focusing my prayers and meditations. Being fully present wherever I am, whether it is in my quiet time, with my family or a friend.

What is your prayer for the New Year?

My hope for the new year is that my Presence will bring me to new victorious heights with the Lord in 2018.

Would you like to live more victoriously in 2018? 

Then do I have a treat for you! My sweet friend, Amy Elaine Martinez has written a book entitled Becoming a Victory Girl and it is jammed packed full of wisdom and encouragement to live in victory. If you are struggling to live in victory then you need to grab a copy of this book it is available for sale on Amazon.

With God on our side, we can face our battles standing on flourishing faith not our floundering feelings. – Becoming A Victory Girl


I am so excited that Amy has given me a copy of this encouraging book to share with one of you! To be entered for a chance to win a copy of Becoming a Victory Girl share this post with your friends on social media with the hashtag #IamAVictoryGirl anytime through the month of January 2018.

Please leave me a comment below and let me know that you shared this post to be eligible to win. The winner will be announced February 1, 2018.


Posted by Misty Phillip

By His Grace: Seek Jesus, Study the Word, Grow in Grace Bible Study Author, Christian Lifestyle Blogger, & Speaker


  1. Donna Miller 01/10/2018 at 8:44 pm

    This is so good! I love your word ‘presence’. My word is ‘delight’ this year. I want to be in His presence and delighting in Him more than anything else in life this year! Bless you sweet sister!


    1. Misty Phillip 01/10/2018 at 9:00 pm

      Hi! Donna, I love your word delight! Be careful of how you may be delighted. It reminds me of a story Beth Moore told about a bear encounter in the mountains. Her story impacted me so much it was all I could think about while I was in the mountains until I encountered a bear!! Praying that the Lord will delight you in amazing ways in 2018!! Many Blessings, Misty


  2. I love that word, ‘Presence’ It speaks to me. Thank you for sharing, my word is ‘wisdom’.


    1. Misty Phillip 01/10/2018 at 9:21 pm

      When we ask for wisdom, this is a prayer that God freely answers.

      If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. – James 1:5

      Blessings and wisdom to you in 2018!


      1. Great verses, mine is Proverbs 31:26, 30 These are mine for 2018

  3. Blogger Loves The King 01/11/2018 at 6:10 am

    I love your word. I could spend all day in His presence. In a way I do, praying and ministering, but I love spending time in the Word and Bible Studies. My word this year is Love, and I love how He confirms it. I’m about to start a Bible Study called “I Am Loved”, and our word of the year in my on-line Bible Studies was announced last week – love.


    1. Misty Phillip 01/11/2018 at 1:41 pm

      You can’t go wrong with the word love! Yes, I to love how God is in the details and confirms our word to us over and over!
      Blessings to you as you start your Bible Study and may God continue to pour out his love to in unique ways in 2018!
      <3 Misty


  4. ooooo…. great word! I used to fear God’s presence with me no matter where I was mainly because of what I was doing. Then I learned about grace and what an honor it is to even be in His presence, let alone be the temple for His very essence. So much peace and comfort there! Blessings to you on your 2018. I look forward to seeing how God’s presence impacts your life!


    1. Misty Phillip 01/11/2018 at 1:45 pm

      Thanks so much Liz, my word nerd friend! You have challenged me to dig deeper with my word for the year, and can’t wait to see what God does with me as I linger in His presence this year!

      Blessings to you in 2018! <3


  5. Great word, Misty! It’s in His presence our lives change to reflect Him to the world. Sitting at His feet, dwelling in His presence, soaking in His love, and leaving with unveiled radiant faces – I want that!

    My word is “yield.”


    1. Misty Phillip 01/11/2018 at 1:52 pm

      LOVE your word! Yield is one of those words with multiple meanings. Yield as an increase, profit or gain and yield as in to submit, surrender or relinquish! Wonder which direction your year will go…

      Blessings to you as God uses the word yield to work in and through your life in 2018!


  6. staceypardoe 01/11/2018 at 7:41 am

    Love this word, Misty! Had I thought through it more, I might have chosen this word for myself! I’m aiming to fix my eyes on what is pure, lovely, good, excellent, admirable, and praiseworthy this year, and so I’ve chosen the word “beauty” as a reminder to look for what’s good in my midst instead of fixing my eyes on what seems to be lacking!


    1. Misty Phillip 01/11/2018 at 1:56 pm

      Hi! Stacey,

      That is one of my favorite scriptures! Beauty is a great word!! If we live aware of the beauty that surrounds, I think we will find beauty in some unlikely places.

      Praying for an exciting adventure for you with Jesus this year!

      Misty 🙂


  7. Hi Misty! I tweeted this today. What a great word choice for 2018. Mine is Believe, and it’s coming up every day in my quiet time, it seems. God is stretching me to really believe what I say I believe about him. Blessings to you!


    1. Misty Phillip 01/11/2018 at 2:01 pm

      Hey Sarah,

      It was great to see your lovely face on the video call yesterday too. 🙂

      I love how God continues to uniquely whisper our words to us. He is intimately acquainted with each of us, and knows exactly what we need!

      Praying for you to have eyes to see and ears to hear all of the things that God wants to show you through your word believe.

      Thanks so much for sharing.

      May God bless your ministry abundantly in 2018 – Misty <3


  8. I like presence. And the opposite of absence. I am doing word studies this month, I may have to include that one, Mine is rest, I have learned to enter His rest, really out of necessity. I was much too tired and worn out, even trying to share Him. everyone has good word, pray we all make are blessed by them.


    1. Misty Phillip 01/11/2018 at 3:22 pm

      Are your word studies for your personal study or something else?

      Much of life is outside of our control. Aren’t you so glad that you can rest in the fact that you have a loving father, who cares for you!

      Praying God’s blessings on you as you rest in HIM! ❤️🙏❤️


      1. It’s my January blog theme, word we can glance over in the Bible. Thanks for commenting, here’s the link if you want to visit,

      2. Misty Phillip 01/12/2018 at 3:38 pm


      3. I like presence and absence, I will consider them for my blog, i need a few more words for January. Thanks for the idea.

  9. My word this year is “Intentional”. I’ve been convicted of ways that I waste time rather than focusing fully on work, being fully present with my kids, or even being intentional about resting.


    1. Misty Phillip 01/11/2018 at 5:16 pm

      Hi! Ellen, I know the Lord is wanting me to be more intentional too, and I think that is why he led me to the word presence! Thanks for adding to our word of the Year conversation!!


  10. Wonderful word! God’s presence is matchless! My word is focus. Like your word, I’m applying it first to God and then other things He is laying on my heart. Sharing on Twitter!


    1. Misty Phillip 01/15/2018 at 9:13 am

      Thanks for sharing Kelly! It is more goal to be more intentional too! Sounds like God is moving us both in similar direction this year. Praying that He will do more then you ask or think, as you chose to focus on Him and others!! 💕


  11. Love your word! Learning to enjoy the presence of the Lord is so important, but so is being ‘present’ with those we love! My word is ‘stretch’ and I’m wondering how the Lord will stretch me this year. I think it’ll be exciting and maybe a bit scary!! 🙂 But scary in a good – get out of your comfort zone – way.


    1. Misty Phillip 01/16/2018 at 4:21 pm

      Hey Tammie! You are brave for choosing the word stretch and I commend you for that word choice! Praying that God does more then you could ask or even imagine possible in and through you this year! Thanks for stopping by and adding to the conversation! Be blessed!! 💕 Misty


  12. “I have to spend time with the Lord in order to get a word from the Lord.” So true!! Presence is a great word for the year! My word this year is Enough.


    1. Misty Phillip 01/16/2018 at 4:14 pm

      Hi! Laura, Enough is a great word!! And something we as women need to remind ourselves of frequently!! Thanks for visiting and blessings to you!! 💕 Misty


  13. Excellent Choice! I love it. My word for this year is Abundance. I remember a time in my early 20’s when I wasn’t trying to hide from God but rather just ignore him because I felt like he was ignoring me. Hard lesson learned. It took me a few years of living “alone” to realize all I was doing was hurting myself even more by distancing myself from my relationship with Him. Presence is an amazing goal for this year. Thank you so much for sharing!


    1. Misty Phillip 01/29/2018 at 12:26 pm

      Hi! Deanna, God is always with us whether we acknowledge it or not, and my hope is that I will be more continually aware of his presence.

      Thanks so much for sharing your word, Abundance! We serve a God of abundance and excited to know what God has in store for you this year!!
      😊 Misty


  14. Presence- what a beautiful word! Yes, we need to be filled with Him before we can pour out to others. I frequently tell God that I don’t want to feed people merely crumbs- I want to feed them solid food. Satisfying food. That can only come AFTER spending precious time with Jesus! Praying you are filled with God’s presence this year and always!


    1. Misty Phillip 01/31/2018 at 8:01 pm

      Hi! Rachel,
      I love the heart of your prayer to feed your peeps meat!! Thanks for your kind and encouraging words!! Blessings to you as you spend time in the presence of Jesus. May He anoint you to bring the truths of scripture to light in new and refreshing ways. Blessings!!! ❤️ Misty


  15. Misty Phillip 02/01/2018 at 6:05 pm

    Congratulations April Barnett!! You are the lucky winner of Becoming a Victory Girl!!


  16. thalianm2016 02/13/2018 at 10:55 am

    Love it! Thanks for sharing. My word for the year is: Awake. Hope your year is blessed.


    1. Misty Phillip 02/13/2018 at 10:56 am

      Love it!!! ❤️


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