Insecurity & True Identity

I remember one time during my sophomore year in college, I was required to give a 15-minute presentation in a women’s ministry course that would account for 33% of my grade. This class had become one of my favorite classes. Something inside of me was coming alive. There was a stirring in my heart that I had never known. It was changing my life.

As much as I loved this class, I had dreaded this presentation the entire semester. The morning arrived & it was my turn to give my presentation. And right before the class started…I left. I couldn’t do it. On top of being completely afraid of public speaking, I was so insecure about presenting to these other girls who looked & acted so put together & I realized anything I would say would be criticized, judged & picked a part. I would make a fool of myself.

Well, that’s what I had told myself anyways.

Because I let insecurity paralyze me to the point that I actually skipped class, I failed the entire course. And unfortunately, this is just one of the many scenarios I could share with you where my insecurity has crept in & destroyed something that could have been wonderful.

I think we all have experienced insecurity in some shape or form. Whether we are insecure about our jobs, our marriages, our friendships or simply ourselves. We know what it’s like to feel inadequate. We know how it has prevented us from doing certain things that we long to do. Or how it keeps us from building friendships with certain people because we feel like we won’t fit in or measure up to their expectations.

Insecurities hinder us & make us feel like we’re not equipped for the task at hand. It distracts us & steals our attention to focus on what we aren’t, instead of the fullness of who we are through Christ.

But oh, dear friend, your true identity is not the image you see in the mirror & it isn’t gaged by your ability & competence to do something on your own. Oh no. It is far greater & more powerful than any of those things.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:9-11

When we stop focusing on who we think we are & get a good look at Who we belong to, we begin to see our true selves very differently.

It is through our weakness & inability that God demonstrates His perfect strength! Our weaknesses & insecurities are exactly what the Lord is asking for us to hand over to Him & if we do that, He will use those very insecurities & weakness to exemplify His strength & perfection!

I am a mess & in no way, am I perfect. But I can point others to the One who is! May God’s strength be seen in me. Not because of anything I am on my own, but because of who I am only through Him!

And so it was with me, brothers & sisters. When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message & my preaching were not with wise & persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power.
1 Corinthians 2:1-5

I declare my God as faithful!

He Gives Strength

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your continual words of encouragement, love & support! I’ve felt blessed beyond words to have you in my life. Jesus has continued to comfort our hearts & be ever so present to us. I am in awe of His faithfulness & have experienced it deeper than I ever had.

My husband & I are looking forward to a relaxing Christmas break together. There’s just something about siting in front of the fireplace, drinking hot chocolate & watching the snow fall outside that brings so much joy to us. And every time it snows this week, I plan on doing just that.
 
I know this time of the year brings it’s own hustle & bustle. During this season especially, one can feel spread a little thin. There are numerous plans to make, families to visit, get-togethers to attend. It can be quite wearing! 

But sometimes this deep down tiredness can be felt throughout the year. And if you’re like me, it can be an ongoing battle. I can’t tell you how many moms I see running their sons to soccer practice, then their daughters to ballet, then off to their kids’ school to help with a bake sale. And that’s all before noon! Let’s not even get started with the list of house chores & church commitments! I’m convinced these woman have capes tucked underneath their sweaters. But I know that the flesh can only run that fast for so long before…BAM…unconscious, facedown in a hill of dirty laundry.

Or my dear sweet, college girls. Sleep, free time & healthy eating are usually foreign concepts. Finals, exams & all-nighters are considered curse words. Four years of books, study groups & filling in tiny, little circles on dreaded tests. (Just a side note…If you don’t study, professors still don’t think it’s clever or amusing if you fill those circles in to make the shape of horse. Not even the ones that own a horse. They won’t give any pity credit for your creativity.) As great of a time as it is, college can be equally exhausting. I remember times when I’m pretty sure I fell asleep with my eyes open staring at a computer screen. After I finally came to, I couldn’t account for the previous 4 days. I wasn’t starving & was wearing different clothes, so I’m pretty sure muscle memory kicked in at some point. Ok, that’s an exaggeration, but barely. 

Be encouraged my friend! There is strength that does not fade. It doesn’t come from within your worn out & exhausted self. It’s always renewing, always plentiful & always yours for the taking. We have a Creator that is everlasting & all powerful, who pours His strength directly into us! Stay submerged in His word & He will continue to give you strength.

Isaiah 40:28-31
 says,

“Do you not know? Have you not heard? 
The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. 
He will not grow tired or weary, & his understanding no one can fathom. 
He gives strength to the weary & increases the power of the weak. 
Even youths grow tired & weary, & young men stumble & fall; 
but those who hope in the LORD 
will renew their strength. 
They will soar on wings like eagles; 
they will run and not grow weary, 
they will walk and not be faint.”

Praise God! Your sails may feel tattered, but your boat is not going down! The waves will toss & crash, but they will only sway your boat, they can not sink it. Your Anchor is firm. Thank you Jesus, for Your strength! I declare my God as faithful!

The Time Is Now

I long to encouraging you in any way that I can, because you encourage me so greatly. In my transition into the new & unknown, I’ve had some thoughts about what really matters. And I’d like to share them with you.

What would we do differently if we REALLY became eternity-minded? It is so, so easy for me to get caught up in the day-to-day routine of life. Laundry, dishes, errands, remembering to put deodorant on BOTH armpits. But what would happen if we grabbed hold of the truth that what we’re doing (or not doing) at this moment, will change the Kingdom of God? Would we be eager to share Jesus with the person we’ve been meaning to? Would we show more abundant love & grace to others? Would we mend our broken relationships with people? Would we ask someone for forgiveness for the hurtful things said and done on our part, even if we feel that we were greatly wronged by the other person? Would we not take offense so easily? Would this kind of mindset bring passion & meaning back into our lives?

I feel like we’re on the edge of something big; something that can’t be stopped. And today is a time of preparation. Preparation of our hearts. Preparation of our minds. Preparation of our bodies. I feel like we should be clothing ourselves not with fashions of this world, but with the armor of God. Oh friend, the time is here. We are mighty warriors and it’s time to take our place & stand on the battleground. Make no mistake, regardless of whether or not we want to be a part of it, we are. It’s happening with or without our permission or participation. The difference is the impact we’ll make. Will we close our eyes & just hope to pass through life unaware or un-phased of the dangers around us? That’s not going to happen. Or will we stand up and boldly claim roles? We are daughters & sons of the Most High! God does not call us to something that He’s not also equipped us for. It’s all there. All we have to do is do it. The calling is there. The armor is there. The favor & anointing is there. 

Romans 13:11&12 says, “And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.”

God’s Kingdom is real. His promises are true. This battle is crucial. And we’re a part of it all.

1 Timothy 6:12, “Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”

Stand up & hold strong to your calling. The enemy will try to beat us down, shut us up & tempt us with comfortable routine. But we will not be defeated. We CAN NOT be defeated. We will not bury our heads in the sand. We will not take the path of least resistance.

May you boldly fight & stay passionate about the vital position you are assigned. I pray daily renewal and refreshment over your body, heart & mind.

1 Peter 2:9, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”

God be with you, my fellow warrior & friend. I declare our God faithful!