Shining the light of God's word into our confused world.

Leaning Into God: A Year Without Fear


Happy 2016, Daydream Believers!

Despite some setbacks right out of the gate, I’m leaning into the new year with a sense of hopeful expectation. I have some big things on my plate this year, including the (re-)release of one book and the writing of another one, among other things. Some of those other things are going to stretch me way beyond my comfort zone, which is partly why I’m dubbing this year my Year Without Fear.

But that’s only part of the reason. The rest of the story is that 2015 was a big year for introspection and spiritual growth. Looking back over my life to see how far God’s brought me, I realized how so much of my life has been ruled by fear. Not just things like social anxiety and shyness, although that’s been part of it, but also things like imposter syndrome, fear of rejection, and fear that I don’t measure up. I don’t know how many opportunities I’ve let pass me by simply because I was afraid I wouldn’t be up to the task and people would regret taking a chance on me.

So as I lean into this year, my Year Without Fear, I’m determined to be brave, to lean on God and let Him MAKE me brave, to trust Him and walk in obedience and not allow fear to enter into any of my decisions.

This ties into my theme word for this year. I’ve signed up to OneWord365, which encourages forgoing resolutions and goal-setting and simply choosing one word to focus and guide you throughout the year. This seems to fit what God’s been doing in me to move me away from my planning and goal-setting addiction and get me to be more surrendered and flexible. I didn’t have a word last year, but looking back, “Surrender” was definitely my theme for 2015. When trying to choose a word to sum up my Year Without Fear theme, the word “trust” seemed the obvious choice, but after praying about it, the word that came to me was “lean.”

As in…

Lean on Jesus.

Lean on the Everlasting Arms.

Lean into what God’s doing in my life.

Lean away from fear.

Lean away from worldly solutions.

I could keep going, but you get the idea. Although I do have a list of what I’m calling “New Year’s Intentions” rather than resolutions, my one real goal for this year is simply to fearlessly lean into God and trust where He’s taking me.

What about you, dear reader? Will you choose to be brave with me this year?

Do you have a guiding word for this year? Have you set any goals or made any resolutions? Share what they are in the comments!

In love,

Linking up with Holley Gerth’s Coffee for Your Heart and Missional Women’s Faith Filled Friday.


  1. Alisa Nicaud

    This was such confirmation for me Jean! Fear was an unwelcome guest in my life for way too long! I so identify with the thoughts of “What opportunities have I missed out on because of fear?” This year, I feel God speaking the word OVERCOME. Overcoming in every area, pushing through the comfortable places in my life so that I can go to the next chapter He has for me. Great post!

    • Jean Marie Bauhaus

      I’m so glad, and so blessed that God was able to use my post in this way! Thanks for letting me know, Alisa. Here’s to both of us overcoming our fear and stepping out of our comfort zones this year!

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