“Mom, I can’t find my soccer jersey!” The oldest boy called out from his room. A frantic search party ensued as we had only 15 minutes until we needed to walk out the door for his game.
With a sinking heart, I headed for the laundry room, only to have my suspicions confirmed. I had completely forgotten to wash his jersey! Now he would have to play with already stinky pits.
I felt so frustrated with myself, but even more, I could see the disappointment on my son’s face. And just like that, I felt like a terrible mom. A complete failure who can’t even keep her kids in clean clothes!
What’s wrong with me?
But it didn’t stop there, no….the enemy of our souls used that stepping stone for the rest of the night to pummel me with reminders of just how worthless I was.
You’ve been there before, right friend? Maybe you let a friend or a spouse down? Maybe you deeply disappointed people at work or at church? You forgot an important appointment? Lost your temper? Didn’t meet your personal goal?
You failed in some way (whether major or minor), and your confidence is shaken.
You’re not alone!
4 Ways Self-Confidence Misleads Christian Women
The truth is that what the world calls self-confidence is actually very misleading in many ways. In fact, self-confidence is pretty much the opposite of what the gospel teaches us about ourselves.
First, self-confidence misleads Christian women by focusing on self.
Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” Luke 9:23 (NIV)
Did you catch that, friend? To follow Christ is to deny self in favor of following Him! If we want to be confident, Christian women, then we cannot be focused on self. We must recognize that our confidence doesn’t come from who we are in this world.
We know that according to Scripture, there is nothing good in us and we all miss the mark of perfection (Rom. 3:23, Rom. 7:18). We are inherently sinful beings, prone to wander (as the hymn rightly claims). So any confidence based on the flesh is already on a shaky foundation.
Second, self-confidence misleads Christian women because it doesn’t last!
Self-confidence is often based on what we do, how others see us, how we appear – everything external rather than internal. It is rooted in comparisons, achievements, popularity with others, and so forth. Thus, we all relate to modern catch-phrases like “mom guilt.”
Confidence based on self is just one moment away from failure! It doesn’t matter how many times we’ve been patient with our children, sacrificed for our husbands, served our friends, obeyed God, and so forth. Because the one time we mess up, we’re back to square one. We’re failures. We can’t do anything right. Right?!
Again, confidence in the flesh is only temporary: one moment away from disaster.
Third, self-confidence misleads Christian women by being easily faked.
One look at social media opens our eyes to this truth! Because self-confidence is based mostly on external factors rather than internal worth, it can be easily faked. We can photoshop all we want, throw out all of the positive affirmations we can think of, stage our photos, and so forth, but still struggle with insecurity on the inside!
How often are we shocked when someone we know, someone who seemed to “have it all together,” admits to feeling depressed or lonely? Why are we surprised when seemingly happy celebrities end their own lives?
Confidence based on self is only as strong as our swagger.
Sad, isn’t it?
Fourth, self-confidence misleads Christian women by enslaving us.
When we set our sights on self-confidence, we either become content that we are “enough” already or we strive for perfectionism and the elusive “got-it-all-together” act. One extreme or another.
But even more concerning, often, as Christian women, we trend toward works – being the “good Christian girl.”
Either extreme leads us away from God’s plan for us, and guess who wins then? The enemy.
You see, friend, self-confidence is directly opposed to the gospel truth that we all fall short, we all need a Savior to redeem us and transform us from the inside out. We’re not “enough” on our own, yet like the apostle Paul, none of us have already arrived at perfection (Philippians 3:13-15).
So when we swallow the world’s self-confidence pill, the one that trains us to focus on the external, we miss out on real peace, lasting joy, secure faith, and an authentic confidence that is not easily shaken!
When will we rise up and say, “No more!”?
What does the Bible teach about growing in authentic confidence?
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2
Scripture commands us NOT to conform to the pattern of this world, but to be transformed, from the inside out, starting with our minds! So, the first step toward a confidence that is centered on Christ rather than self is to change our patterns of thinking.
As Christian women, we cannot afford to approach confidence from the same perspective as the world!
This is why I’m so excited to tell you about The Confidence Journey online Bible study. With a focus on wisdom from the Word and a prayerful examination of lies we might be believing, transformation IS possible. We CAN have godly confidence!
The Confidence Journey is a Bible study workbook, a companion to the book I released last year, Being Confident of This. And I want to invite you all to join us for an online Bible study experience where we will study the root of authentic confidence together!
Class starts October 14th and runs for 6 weeks. Registration is OPEN now through October 8th – just click here for more details. And don’t forget to check out the BONUSES we’re offering for this unique experience.
My heart for you, my friend, is to see you walk in real, lasting confidence.
This world needs more confident Christian women. Women who understand their worth, who walk free, who say yes to God, who live out the abundant life He has planned for them!
Will you join us?