Cultivating My Way Through 2021

As you might recall, my one word for 2021 was cultivate. I loved this word and feel that it really helped me to focus on the right things.

Here on the blog we cultivated prayer, gratitude, time with our Savior, reverence towards God, forgiveness, and so much more.

In my own life, I also cultivated trust in God, a deeper faith, praise, fasting, and walking with God. But on the other hand, I also cultivated a slower pace, time for the little things, and embracing contentment.

There is one habit that I started this year, in relation to my one word. Each time the month changed, I had a “check-in.” Basically I would look at the month that just ended to see how I did. I wrote down the things that went well and what I focused on. But I also wrote down areas where I wanted to improve. This helped keep my one word in mind all year, and it gave me 12 opportunities to make adjustments. I got value out of these check-ins, so I plan to keep it up.

As is often the case in my life – I did not do a perfect job, but God stepped in and helped me out. There were many changes in my life in 2021, and clinging to God was my lifeline.

We had a lizard living in our house for several weeks. He mainly stayed in one particular bedroom, but sometimes ventured out to two other rooms. We don’t know how he lived for weeks without food or water. My husband tried to catch him a couple of times, but the little guy was fast. One day the lizard was just hanging out in the hallway. I spotted him and alerted my husband. My husband slowly made his way to the lizard. The lizard didn’t try to escape this time, so my husband was able to grab him and set him outside. (Ironically, this was Thanksgiving Day. Imagine how thankful the lizard must have been and what a feast he had when he got outdoors!) On the first few attempts to catch the lizard, he didn’t recognize that we were trying to help him. He saw us as a threat. Finally, either he realized we were safe, or perhaps he was just too weak to move. But either way, in the end, we were able to set him free. And perhaps our little friend was able to recognize the blessing.

This incident with the lizard reminds me of my 2021. Many changes in my life seemed like a threat. But as I clung to God and trusted Him, I could see that He was there. God always has a plan and a purpose. Nothing comes into our lives by mistake. We just have to learn to hold tightly to Him through it all. And He will work all things together for good (Romans 8:28).

And cultivating my way through the year helped me to stay intentional in my life. This was a strong word and one that has taught me a lot. If you had a word for 2021, I would love to hear how it played a role in your year.

Next week I will reveal my word for 2022!

Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. – Isaiah 43:19

Image by Marco de Winter on

© 2022 Bridget A. Thomas

17 Comments on “Cultivating My Way Through 2021

  1. I love your monthly check-in idea, Bridget! It’s hard to consistently write down something every day about your progress, because life gets in the way. But a monthly check-in seems less daunting.

    I enjoyed your lizard story. That would have totally freaked my wife out.😳 We would have been in a hotel until our little “buddy” was gone.

    But it’s a great analogy of unwanted things in our lives. They don’t need to be there and we don’t need them to be their either.
    Blessings for you and your family in 2022!🙏❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    • I am glad you liked the monthly check-in idea! I did too. And I am going to keep that up! It can be too easy to set big goals and then allow life to get in the way.
      About your wife and the lizard – you had me laughing! I am just really glad that our dogs never got a hold of him!
      But yes, I did feel a lot like that lizard in 2021. Running for cover, instead of allowing God to carry me to safety.
      David, thank you so much for your kind words! I pray that you and your family have a blessed 2022 also! 🙂


    • So true! Kind of like reading the Bible. We can read a passage we are familiar with and suddenly see something we never saw before. Happy New Year! I pray your 2022 is happy and healthy!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It was interesting to read all the things you cultivated through the year. I really like the 12 opportunities you eventually had because of the reflection you did each month. That is an awesome way to not let the whole year slide by and things just fizzle out because we did not pause and reset.
    The lizard story is a good reminder to cling to God and trust Him because he does have a plan and a purpose for everything in our lives.
    My word for 2021 was Deepen. I wanted my relationship, walk and time to God to deepen. I think it all did in some way but the other thing that I have come to realise were things that I was not doing properly enough in my walk. God made me dig deeper for sure revealing these things to me and this led me to choosing my word for this year. I will reserve the reveal for your next post.
    Blessings my friend 🤗🌺

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for sharing what you learned this past year through your word, Deepen. Deepening our relationship with the Lord will always produce fruit and blessings. And I love that the word you chose revealed more to you than you anticipated. I am looking forward to hearing your word for this year!! Blessings to you too, dear friend!! ♥️🤗

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My word for 2021 was “bravely accomplish”. The accomplish was aimed at weeding out my life of cobwebs and baggage but we t further to also clean out my home of material things I did not use and donate them to those who needed them or could use them. The bravely part I leaned on when I was tempted to keep something..just in case. It kept me on track and I bravely accomplished as I went from room to room, closet to closet and cupboard to cupboard. I am glad to say I donated car loads of “things”…from clothes to books to extra sheets and pillows, kitchen items, toys, furniture, etc. God then helped me shake fears, let loose of ridiculous baggage and bravely face giving them all to Him. word(s) worked. I hope my new one works as mightily!
    Bridget..I’m glad you cultivated your way through 2021. I witnessed part of your journey and it warmed my heart. Thank you for taking me along on challenges and growth opportunities. You are such a special person and friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lorraine, I am so glad to hear how well the words “bravely accomplish” helped you in 2021. What you went through is something that all of us can learn from. Many of us tend to hang onto material things, as well as “baggage.” It can be scary to release, because there is comfort found in what we are accustomed to. But you did a magnificent job, leaning on the Lord! Thank you for sharing your insight. And thank you for walking along with me on this journey, my friend! May 2022 be a year where we see more growth as we draw closer to Jesus! 🙏✝️🙌


  4. Ah yes–lizards in the house. We had a few of those over the forty years we lived in Florida. Also a skink (!!) that was very difficult to catch, and even a big toad! (At least he was easy to catch.) I’m just thankful we never had a snake indoors–THAT would have freaked me out for sure. Lizards, skinks, and toads aside, sounds like you cultivated much wisdom and faith in 2021, Bridget!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love the lizard story!! It ties in so well with what I’m going through with this house and neighborhood. Your words really helped me to see my situation in a completely different perspective! God puts us where we need to be for a reason and I really need to focus on that. Thank you for sharing this!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michelle, I’m so glad this post was helpful. I do know what you mean. We are currently in a house we are not happy with. But I do believe God has a reason. I am learning to trust Him. It’s not always easy because we can’t see everything He sees. But He is always looking out for us. 🙌✝️🙏♥️

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Your check-ins sound like a great idea! I guess I do that with books haha.
    The lizard in your house? I couldn’t handle it 🤣🤣🤣 glad he was able to eventually get freed from fear and confinement!

    Liked by 1 person

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