What’s your Picture for the Year? {#Pic4Year}


Last year I started a new revolution (well, not exactly a revolution, but a fun conspiracy nonetheless). Many folks choose a word for the year, which is a helpful and amazing way to focus your year and anticipate what God is doing.

But being a visual girl, I wanted something more, something to represent abundance (2012’s word) in a tangible way. So I chose a picture, had it immortalized in canvas, and placed it near my desk so I could be reminded of abundance all day long.

Here’s the picture I used last year:

The most joyful thing about this picture was the opportunity I had at the end of the year to award it to a friend who personified abundance to me. I think this is the start of a really cool tradition.

So onto 2013. In the middle of digging weeds and lamenting my lot in publishing, the Lord powerfully spoke to me, yet in a whisper, while bees buzzed and my fingers browned. He said, “Choose small; tend large.” I applied it to my marketing efforts and wrote a post about it here. 

But the phrase keeps niggling me. It’s more than just a marketing phrase; its’ an analogy for my life. I choose large (and way too much) and tend small. I’m overscattered, not present in the moment. I fail at resting. I speed by steady purposefulness. I flit here and there, never staying put, kind of like those bees buzzing around me while I weeded.

So I don’t have one word for 2013, I have four.

Choose small. Tend large.

I knew right away which picture I’d use:


And now I’m off to The Canvas People to make a canvas of the picture. Click on this link to get a big discount on your own: Cheap, Quality Photo Canvases! $25 Off + FREE shipping. We’re so sure you’ll like it! An 8×10 is about $25 with this offer. I can attest to the quality and efficiency of the Canvas People. But if you’re strapped for cash, just print out your picture and mount it on some cardboard or place it on your fridge so you’ll have a reminder of your word/phrase/picture of the year.

And here’s where you come in. I want you to choose a #Pic4Year! Here’s how.

  1. Pray about what word or phrase God might be speaking to you. Look over last year, remembering the main themes of your life. Look through your journal and look for repetitive words or scriptures. If you’re still baffled, ask your spouse, children or close friend what they see from the outside.
  2. Once you have your word(s), search through your picture archives or a free image site for an image. If you want to add your text to the image, consider trying Pic Monkey or Pixlr Express. (I use these both to make all my pins and images here; they are FREE).
  3. Write a post about your words/image and link back to this post. Here’s the link: http://www.marydemuth.com/?p=15341.
  4. Join the party here and upload your picture using the Linky Tools below.
  5. Tweet about your fun picture using this hashtag: #Pic4Year

That’s it. I hope this exercise helps you focus on this next year. I know for me, I’m more poised to think differently, to slow down, and take this life a little more deliberately. I’ll be taking things off my plate and focusing! I’m excited to see how this changes my day to day life and heart.

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  • http://www.SandwichINK.com SandwichINK

    I actually went with “Fruit of the Spirit” with a different fruit each month :) This month is peace, February will be (surprise, surprise) Love, and on thru the year – but keeping the focus on the precious Fruit of God’s Spirit in us.

  • Linda

    Mary, thank you for this challenge! I’ve had a word and verse each year, but this is the first year I’ve created a picture of the year. My word is “beholding,” and I’ve meditated on it for a while before creating my pic. Thank you, again.

  • http://www.blessingthebeloved.blogspot.com/ Tammy Carter

    Here’s my link: http://www.blessingthebeloved.blogspot.com/2013/01/something-beautiful.html I linked this post in my post as well. I did feel a little softening of my heart. I know there are still deep wounds and pain that I need to working on. But, this was good for my heart. Thank you so much.

  • Renee Teague

    My image for the post below did not upload…I am disappointed. Maybe I will try again later.

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      Sorry about that. Sometimes the Linky Tools is wonky.

  • Renee Teague

    “Peace” – That’s my word for 2013. I figure that if one of the last things Jesus said before he left earth was “My peace I give you…” that he must really want us to have it. This year I will pursue peace – not as the world gives. This image is from Old Salem during the Christmas season. I am blessed to have recently relocated just a stone’s throw away from this picturesque historic living village. The word “salem” is Hebrew for “Peace.” Worry, perfectionism, procrastination, sleep depravity, clutter – (the list goes on and I have just gotten started!) – so many things steal our peace. So I seek to surrender all those and more in the pursuit of peace and just maybe promote peace with others along the way.

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      Great word, Renee.

  • http://twitter.com/Brittany_Lee22 Brittany Lee Ketter

    This is my picture for the year and with it my words and verse! Live. Pursue. Love. Endure. Hebrews 12! :)

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      Love it!

  • Christy Distler

    This is such an awesome idea! My words for 2013 is “Be Thou My Vision.” My Pic4Year is here: http://christydistler.blogspot.com/2013/01/pic4year-picture-for-year-linkup.html. The Linky Tools are missing now (they were there last night). I’ll check back later for them. Thanks for doing this, how fun!

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      I adore that song.

  • http://twitter.com/seasonswithsoul Elizabeth Anne May

    I love this idea. Funny enough, I just got on the oneword365 wagon with Trust, but, as a visual person too and budding photog, I had to put it with one of my recent macro shots. Turns out in my post, I talked more about the photo than the word ;) Here’s my post. ow.ly/gxsG7 I can’t seem to find the linky?

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      It’s at the bottom of the full post.

      • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

        Oops, looks like it disappeared. I’ll check into it.

        • http://twitter.com/seasonswithsoul Elizabeth Anne May

          Thanks! Added my post/image to the linky, now that it’s back up.

  • His glorygirl

    Mary – Thanks for sharing your word with us! Seeing your canvas was yet another encouragement from the Lord that I needed to claim the word He’s been giving me. My word is “enough”. The canvas I created for it is here: http://hisglorygirl.blogspot.com/2013/01/one-little-word-for-2013.html
    Your post has given me enthusiasm and anticipation – He has good plans for His girls!
    – Julie

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      That is beautiful, Julie. Did you share it on the linky below?

  • Heidi

    I had a word, too: breathe. I love the idea of a picture to go with it. Thanks for sharing this.

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      Though it’s hard to see “breathe” in a picture. :) I can’t wait to see what you come up with.

  • http://profiles.google.com/caraputman Cara Putman

    Awesome. Praying for a picture now!

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth


  • abbysnews

    i know my word for the year…it just came to me today even though i’ve been wondering about it for a while. it’s “better.” i want to be a better version of myself this year. i want to be better than the best i’ve ever been.
    i was thinking about how with the iphone there are always software updates, etc. that are supposed to make things better. but when apple changed the maps app from google to their own, it wasn’t better. it was worse. that update was not an improvement. i read comments on articles about that, and people were commenting about how they wished they could have gone back to a previous version where they had the google maps app because it was better. i thought about how in my own life, i sometimes wish i could go back to a previous version of myself too, when i was better.

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      This is a really great thought, Abby.

      • abbysnews

        thanks, Mary!

  • Lacie Nezbeth

    Mary, I really love this idea of putting a visual piece to the year’s goal. I already had my word or theme for 2013, but this post inspired me to find the perfect picture to match! I love the result! Thanks!! :)

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      Very cool!

  • lizaleegrace

    My word for the year is whimsy…which I already have pictures of in the form of greeting cards. Yes, greeting cards. I have a set that practically define whimsy, already framed and in my craft room. Which is where I want to be spending a lot of time this year.

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      I have a crush on that word.

  • http://thepuresacrifice.blogspot.com/ Deanna Wiseburn

    Well I already know my word for the year. Submission….However I have not thought about picking a picture to go with it. I don’t have time now to go searching but hopefully later today I can find something to use.

    I did not link up for the simple reason that I have not picked a picture yet, but thought anyone wanting to seeing my post on my word, might like the link above.

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      Great word. Hard word.

  • http://godspotting.net Sheila Seiler Lagrand

    Thanks for hosting us, Mary! I love your phrase and image. Happy New Year!

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      You too Sheila.

  • Julie Arduini

    Love it. What I find fascinating is your 2012 word is the same word He gave me for 2013.

  • Dawn

    “Fix my eyes on Jesus” (II Corinthians 4:18) and my picture is from google images.

  • WendyPaineMiller

    Love this idea!

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      So glad, Wendy.

  • http://www.ericdingler.com/ Eric Dingler

    I really like this idea.

    I see a fascinating exercise coming together for my team. I’m going to share this post with them. Then, we will have 2 sets of all the pictures printed. One for each of us to have of our picture to hang in our office/space. The other, to hang together someplace on our campus. Then, at the end of the year, each person get’s to take someone else’s picture off the wall that inspired them. It could be the picture inspired them, or the person. This could turn into a really great tradition in our organization.

    May I expand on this idea and write post about it on my blog as a staff moral exercise?

    • http://www.marydemuth.com Mary DeMuth

      Eric, of course! Expand away! And how cool to do it as a team exercise. Send me a pic of the wall when you’re done.