How about little Christmas in July?
There’s this passage of Scripture that normally only gets read around Christmas time, but has some timeless truths about friendship.
In this series, we’ve looked at the confidence to be you, the confidence to stand firm, the confidence to step out, and the confidence to be still.
When we live with confidence in Christ, we shine, radiating the light of Jesus’ love. We reflect Him who is our confidence and who gives us courage.
We are dearly loved daughters of the King of kings, and we are called to wear our crowns, not in selfish conceit, but in sacrificial love. Confidence isn’t about simply being comfortable in our own skin, or having the courage to try new and adventurous things. Confidence is about boldly living and loving like Jesus. It is about following God over fear and serving others over insecurities.
This crown wearing and confident shining makes me think of the story of a woman who became a brave queen. Her courage came not from her earthly title of queen, but from her heavenly identity as daughter of the King.
Often when I think of being confident and courageous, I think of action. That stepping out. That pulling off the mask. That facing of fears.
But confidence is also found in being still. That ceasing of the striving for approval. That letting go of the attempts to control. That stopping of the hustle to plan it all, do it all, figure it all out. And being still brings more confidence for the stepping out, the pulling off, the facing.
For in the stillness, we find strength. In the stillness, we find rest and renewal. In the stillness, we hear the whispers of God.
It can be hard to be still. Because we like to be in control. We like to accomplish and do and strive, and we try to do it in our own strength, relying on our own abilities. We wear busy like a badge of honor, but we’re heading straight for burn out.
I want to live boldly. Bravely. Courageously.
I want to be confident in my own skin, wearing my own personality rather than a mask, not letting those insecurities that disguise themselves as voices in my head hold me back from sharing, serving, helping, befriending, enjoying, creating.
I want a life that’s full of faith, stepping and leaping with courage and confidence, even into the hard stuff, messy, uncomfortable stuff of life, just believing that God’s got this, and He’s got me.
And yet, there is a small part of me that isn’t so sure I want that, a little whisper of doubt about living in faith. Because oddly enough, living boldly, bravely, and courageously is actually kind of scary.
Confidence means “full trust; belief in the powers, trustworthiness, or reliability of a person or thing.”
God calls us to live with confidence, fully trusting in Him and relying on His power. Self-confidence, or the confidence to be myself, is found in Christ; in living as who I am in Him.
Living with confidence can be hard, I know. There are many fears, insecurities, anxieties, and worries that can weaken our courage. So often, I can feel weighed down by them, held back by them, and even chained by them. They grip my heart, and squeeze the bravery right out of me, and find my spirit caving under the pressure, folding in and curling up on itself. Weak and helpless, no matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to shake the insecurities out of my heart.
And in this death grip, those insecurities keep me from fully living; they hold me back from doing the things I want to do, the things I feel called to do. I don’t speak up, I don’t try the new, I avoid the uncomfortable, I keep saying Next time, I put up walls, I put on masks, all because of the fears of rejection, failure, disappointment, the unknown.
Maybe insecurities sometimes, or a lot of times, grip your heart? Maybe some fear is weighing down and holding back, and you feel your spirit caving?
Is there freedom for those who are slaves to the fear and insecurities?