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Fear Less or Fearless

It’s interesting that I see all these people talking about having one word for 2011. For several weeks before new year’s day, I had one word reverberating and shaking inside me. If you’re any good at reading titles and using deductive reasoning, you already know what that word is…

Fearless

I’m not going to lie, fear has been a huge part of my life. It’s usually one of my first (if not my first) reaction to uncertainty or circumstances beyond my control. I’ve come such a long way from where I used to be terrified to speak or sing in public, and now it’s so fulfilling to me. Still, even with that experience, I struggle with fears when I know it’s not what God intends.

I said on Sunday as I preached that many times I’ve been content to ‘fear less’ instead of being ‘fearless’ and embracing His life and word. That’s not good enough any more.

I truly believe that this is the year to deal with this junk and step out in some significant ways. One of them is my job and I am officially on the way out. I’m thrusting myself into faith and His word, believing that God loves me and my family more than I ever could. That’s a huge one for me, but there are also a thousand practical things in life and church that I know are coming. Step by step.

This is not a time to be dominated, but stand up in His righteousness and truth. The verse I keep hearing is Proverbs 29:2,

When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice;
when the wicked rule, the people groan.

I’ve thought of this in a lot of different contexts, but I’ve come to the conclusion I want righteousness to rule in my heart, life, gifts, church, finances, everything. The people of God have to arise because ruling isn’t just about political power or natural influence. We let wickedness rule in all kinds of areas because we are afraid to engage, afraid to be different, afraid to trust God.

But when righteousness rules, people will notice and rejoice. There will be more peace, joy, fulfillment, giving… The poor will be taken care of. The lonely will find a place for them. The broken will find their healing, and the weary will find rest. To let fear dominate is to let wickedness rule, but someone is groaning  and waiting  on us to express the freedom that was bought for us in Christ.

It’s not about never feeling any fear, it’s about trusting His word and following Him no matter what the cost. I don’t know what it’ll look like, but I want to give myself in this year to being fearless and encouraging others in fearlessness. It’s just time for this.

It’s hard to imagine being completely fearless, but I’m going to try and I hope you will too. With your call, your family, your church, your job, your business, your giving, on and on–imagine no fear whatsoever stopping you from obeying His voice. That’s what I call ruling.

Do you have a word that defines (or that you want to define) your year? What is it? Have you settled for trying to fear less instead of being fearless? What would you do if you were completely fearless?


I have included this post in Bonnie Gray’s Faith Barista jam where we were encouraged to share one word God is putting on our heart for the new year. I also linked it up at Grit and Glory for the One Word 2011 post. Please  go check everything out by clicking those links.

30 Comments

  1. Living fearless… resting sure in God.

    I’ll commit to that… have a few..ok, a lot of things to overcome in the process.
    Dusty Rayburn recently posted..Squashing the Old GrumpMy Profile

    • Great thing is Jesus overcame them first. We just get to live out His victory. I know, I know… easier said than done! But it’ll be a great ride. :)

      Thanks Dusty.

  2. I’ve never thought about the difference between fearless and fear less, but yes, I see it now. I definitely have way too much fear, too, and am working on it this year as well -- one of my “one words” is Depend…

    Thanks, Jason. Good stuff.
    Lisa notes… recently posted..A habit with an appetite- pleaseMy Profile

    • Glad it’s “Depend” and not “Depends” (for several reasons). :) Thanks Lisa. Blessings!

  3. Good post jason. I love the fear less or fearless distinction. Glad to hear you are stepping out in faith. When will that happen with your job? Thanks.
    bill (cycleguy) recently posted..Better Than I DeserveMy Profile

    • It hasn’t worked on my timeline but I know God has it all in His hands. :) I’m moving to part-time this month to keep them going until they get someone new. Exciting to see all God is going to do! Thanks Bill.

  4. Well stated and good moving deeper in the santification and repentance. God told Joshua to be strong and courageous as he moved forward in what God advaned. HOwever, fearlessness for the sake of fearlessness is dangerous. What we need is be fearless of man and fearful of God. Looking in faith for Him to see us through in accordance with His will. When He is for us, who can stand against us. And if he is not for us, what chance do we have?
    peacebringer recently posted..Musings on the New Year- Digging Deep and AdvancingMy Profile

    • Couldn’t agree more. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. I want THAT fear in greater and greater measure. Thanks so much for your thoughts!

  5. My word is hope. 2010 was rough, but I am going to hang on to hope.
    God bless you in your strive to become fearless.
    Helen recently posted..Merry Twelfth Day of ChristmasMy Profile

    • Hope is so important. That’s wonderful pursuit of Him. Thank you, Helen.

  6. As I have dealt with my own fear issues, I’ve learned that fear does not come from God (as in, fear that is the opposite of faith and peace rather than fear tied to self-preservation). The Spirit of God brings peace and hope. Therefore, when I am fearful, I know that I need to step away from fear because it will attack my faith. When fear strikes I need to rest in the Spirit of God’s power to overcome fear and to bring me to a place of peace and rest.

    • Absolutely! Thank you, Ed. Wonderfully stated. I appreciate it.

  7. I love what you did with your word, Jason. There’s an ocean of difference between fearing less and being fearless. I’m with you bro and excited to see that boldness rise up!

    My word is “resolve”.
    Tony Alicea recently posted..Why You Hate ChangeMy Profile

    • Thanks Tony! Love your word and the post you wrote about it.

  8. My word was story.

    And I love how you distinguished the difference between fear less and fearless. Good stuff kiddo.
    Michael recently posted..PuzzlesMy Profile

    • Thanks, champ. Are we giving each other nicknames now? :)

  9. When I think of your word…fearless…I think that the “safest” and most alive place to be is in His will, following hard after Him. Thanks Jason for encouraging us!

    “Now,” the Just shall live by faith. But if he draws back, My soul shall have no pleasure in him.” (39)“But we are not of those withdrawing to destruction, but of those who believe to the preserving of the soul.” Hebrews 10:38-39

    • Yes, Jay! And that is one of my favorite verses. I quote it all the time. Blessings.

  10. I love the question, What would I do if I had no fear?

    Somewhere in the answer to that question is usually the thing to which God says, “I can do that, kely.”

    Great words, bro.

    • Yes, He can. Thanks Kely.

  11. I’m not generally fearful—because I tend to fear less. Thanks for the challenge to rewrite that word.
    Sheryl recently posted..One WordMy Profile

    • Thank you, Sheryl.

  12. “I don’t know what it’ll look like, but I want to give myself in this year to being fearless and encouraging others in fearlessness. It’s just time for this.”

    This.is.me.too.

    Jason, It’s hard for me to imagine being fearless too. But, I am going to try. And I’m happier knowing you are too. ;) Let’s see where faith leads all of us this year!

    Thank you for sharing your heart so fearlessly in the jam this week and giving the jam a place of honor on your Friday hit list. I’m grateful.
    Bonnie Gray | FaithBarista recently posted..Soul Resolutions- What Builds Your ConfidenceMy Profile

    • Amen! We’ll walk it out together. Thanks so much Bonnie. :)

  13. look forward to seeing what God does with your fearlessness this year!

    • Thanks Alece! I liked your challenge and words of encouragement to us. Thanks so much. :)

  14. Fearless! Well, alright and Amen :D Happy New Year Jason.
    Jeri Taira recently posted..Refreshing Myself -- Refreshing OthersMy Profile

    • Thank you, Jeri! :)

  15. You know my word/s: Follow, Soar

    And I hope and pray that the changes in 2011 create much faith in your life and less fear. You are inspiring many. Thank you.

    I’m with you wanting to be FEARLESS.

    With God, all things are possible. Agree?

    Peace and Happy New Year. It’s still okay to say that right?

    Tiffany
    Tiffany Stuart recently posted..Vlog- New for 2011My Profile

    • I think it’s perfectly fine to say that! Thanks Tiffany and blessings to you. I appreciate the encouragement.