People with low self-confidence find themselves with this question in mind wherever they do or say something. They are at a loss when they cannot comprehend what others think about their actions to an extent that they will not move on to the next task. Sometimes it is fear, anxiety, guilt, remorse, jealousy, threat…name them. The feeling robs them of the joy of enjoying relationships, the peace of mind that Christ has extravagantly graced to every believer and even the joy of service, for the fear of what they will be left saying. Today I want to address this issue with few nuggets that I have been learning.
Some people have grown to believe that there is something innately wrong with them. They have no confidence whatsoever in anything they do, but have immeasurable supply of a feeling of inadequacy and incompetence. They always imagine their supervisors want them to do more, their boyfriends want them to look better, their parents are not proud of them etc. In addition to this, they develop a fear of the unknown, always sit in wait for a ‘poor job’ response and are sometimes not able to celebrate their friends’ successes as they wander what is wrong with them.
Because of the inadequacy feeling, they automatically think that others see them in the same way and that others are laughing at them, will reject them, do not respect them, and will take advantage of them. They consequently will sit waiting to see these signs and will be overly sensitive and easily offended. They also do not know how to effectively express their feelings. They are either angry or just won’t know what to say. They are not objective and find it hard to be assertive in responses for the fear. They do not offer the best company at times, for they will want to withdraw to pity parties and deep introspection. They even may develop a workaholic behavior since the workplace seems a best hideout; the outside has so many uncertainties and maybe in the workplace, they know what exactly to do.
Simply, these people lack inner peace! One writer makes an observation that the reason we are not at peace with others is because we are not at peace with ourselves, and the reason we are not at peace with ourselves is because we are not at peace with God. #Selah
There is another group of people who find confidence in what they do. In fact, many define self-esteem as “feelings of worth based on their skills, accomplishments, status, financial resources, or appearance.” There is danger in this; it shifts our satisfaction and worth from Christ to material things that are immortal, and leads to idolatry.
Our sense of self-confidence should not depend on what we do, but rather on who we are in Christ; irrespective of our circumstances. Isaiah 43:4 says that “…because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you…” When we realize it is not by coincidence we were created, that God loves us as we are, that He is not always looking for our mistakes (Ps. 103:9-10) then we will be confident of our work, appearance and purpose
Let us appreciate our right positions in God’s kingdom and intention in creating us, that He loves us, that He wants us alive, full of joy and peace and serve Him confidently as He sends us. Let us work at everything ‘as unto the Lord’ and await His praise, not that of men. Let us not be like the people and rulers in John 12: 42-43, who believed in Jesus but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue; for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God. Let us be at peace with Him!