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

My One Word for 2017


Up until just a few days ago, I thought my One Word 365 word for 2017 was all settled. I’d begun thinking and praying about it back in October, and by the time Thanksgiving arrived I had decided that my word would be Faithfulness. This is definitely an area that I need to work on. It’s a fruit of the Spirit, but one that doesn’t always come naturally to me (although I guess none of them really come naturally, which is why they’re called fruits of the Spirit and not fruits of human nature). Especially when it comes to things like follow-through or stick-with-it-ness. I was feeling convicted in this area and so choosing this as my One Word made sense.

I was all set for this to be my word, y’all. I did a big spread in my bullet journal exploring all of the meanings of the word and how they apply in my life, as well as what scripture says about faithfulness and being a faithful steward. I had a blog post — what I thought would be this blog post — all written in my head. I was already trying to put it into practice in my daily life. This was SO my word, without a doubt.

But then a few days ago another word started forcing its way into my consciousness. It was so forceful that I screwed up my brow and tilted my head and was like, “Lord? Is this from you? Am I supposed to change my word?” And let me tell you, I didn’t want to. Because this new word? It scares me a little. It makes my heart beat faster in ways both good and bad. Plus I had already put all this thought and energy into the other word. I didn’t want to change it. So I tried to just ignore it and hope it would go away.

I’m sure you can guess that it didn’t. So this morning, I presented both words to the Lord and asked Him to please make it plainly obvious to me during my morning devotionals and blog readings which word He preferred that I focus on this year. And do you know what? He did.

And the word?


Even typing that just now gave me butterflies in my stomach. If there is one word that people who know me will almost unanimously use to describe me, it’s “reserved.” I’m extremely inhibited. There are very few things that I ever do with abandon.

But I believe there are some areas where God is calling me to lay down my inhibitions and fear and do with wild abandon. Things like…

Trust with abandon.

Surrender with abandon.

Love with abandon.

Praise Him with abandon.

Hope with abandon.

Dream with abandon.

Run after Him with total abandon.

How might my life be different if I give Him my all in these areas without holding anything back? If I can lay down all of my adult baggage and reservations and have a truly childlike faith? Imagining the answer is both thrilling and terrifying. But I think I’m being asked to find out.

And while faithfulness is still something I need to work on cultivating more of this year, as God was confirming my new word He was also showing me that I had attached an agenda to the previous word. I was looking at it like some kind of magic formula, thinking that if I could just be more faithful with such-and-so then He’ll see that I’m trustworthy enough to handle prosperity and success. And while faithfulness is a worthy goal, my motivation isn’t coming from the right place. God is not manipulated or controlled by magic formulas.

He is wild and uncontrollable, and also wholly in control.

And that’s why it’s safe for me to come to Him with utter abandon.

So that’s my word for 2017. It will sure be interesting to see where this takes me.

What’s your word?





PS: Find more encouragement for your soul at these linkups:

Holley Gerth’s Coffee For Your Heart

Missional Women’s Faith Filled Fridays

#DreamTogether at God-Sized Dreams

PPS: Looking for some a-MAZ-ing tools and resources to help you be more productive, write better and/or generally do life while keeping your sanity? I’ve got the goods — sign up to receive Daydreamer Dispatches, a once- or twice-a-month newsletter from yours truly, and you’ll automatically receive a super-sekrit link to My Absolute Must-Have, Can’t Live Without Tools and Resources list! Click here to get your link!

JeanA Jesus girl through and through, Jean Marie Bauhaus is on a journey of healing and rediscovering who God purposefully created her to be and figuring out how to do life within that context. She’s the wife of Matt and mom to a crew of four-legged dependents, all of whom make their home in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Jean counts coffee, dark chocolate and a yarn addiction among her vices. She’s the author of Restless Spirits, a family-friendly paranormal romance/mystery now available from Vinspire Publishing. You can learn more about her novels and short fiction at






  1. sunny

    That’s amazing. Well, God’s amazing, and the word comes from Him, so it’s amazing, too. I like, too, the idea (although I don’t know if it’ll apply to you) of abandoning the things that are harmful to us. Letting go of practices and (dare I say it?) people who are negative influences on your life. As I said, though, Idk if that applies to your situation.

    I think abandon is a great word. Can’t wait to see where God takes you this year. <3

    • Jean Marie Bauhaus

      God really is amazing. And I definitely think I’m being called to abandon some harmful practices. I actually wrote and scheduled this post a couple of weeks ago, and since then this word has also come to mean abandoning my way of doing things, abandoning worldly convention, and giving myself wholly over to His way. His way is scary because it means I’m not in control but there’s also so much rest.

      Forward with abandon! 😉 ♥

  2. Teresa

    Hi Jean Marie, I am so glad to visit your blog today! Coffee for your Heart has connected us. Thanks for sharing your word for 2017. I pray that you experience abandon in Jesus, fully and beautifully all year.

    • Jean Marie Bauhaus

      Thank you, Teresa! I receive that in Jesus’ name! Thanks for dropping by!

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