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"I Think I Can"


Proverbs 26:12
Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

1 Peter 5:5
Likewise, younger ones, be subject to older ones, and all being subject to one another. Put on humility. For God resists proud ones, but He gives grace to the humble.

St. Augustine of Hippo
 'Pride is the commencement of all sin' because it was this which overthrew the devil, from whom arose the origin of sin; and afterwards, when his malice and envy pursued man, who was yet standing in his uprightness, it subverted him in the same way in which he himself fell. For the serpent, in fact, only sought for the door of pride whereby to enter when he said, 'Ye shall be as gods.'

Confidence. 
Are you confident? 
Do you want to be confident? 

Many of you will think, "Yes!" 
Some of you will wonder and even say, "No. Pride is a sin." 
A few of you will say, "I am." 
A few of you will say, "Am I allowed?" 

First, let me state that confidence is not pride. 

CONFIDENCE is:
trust, firm assurance, faith, conviction, certainity. 

When I was younger I wasn't as confident as I am now. Like most teens, I had insecurities that lead me to think less of myself than I ought to have. 

Romans 12:3 
For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.

This verse clearly says to not worship ourselves, but ever so subtly it also says, "think of yourself as you ought to," 

But how should we think of ourselves? Just as certainly as we shouldn't think highly of ourselves, we too shouldn't think too lowly of ourselves either. 

Psalm 139:14 
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful.

We are no mere creation of God's. We are the creation. Each of us has potential, each of us is loved by God and He desires for all of us to be with Him one day. 

To be human is no small matter. It is a great honor. 
To be you is nothing to look over. You are special and God wishes for you to be a part of His great plan. 
And that is something we should think of when we think of ourselves. 
This is amazing. 
How can we hate ourselves; God's own creation? 
How can we see anything ugly or imperfect in His work? 

The ugly, imperfections are not of His doing but of our choices alone. And I think that should motivate our hope. 

These last few years as I've grown in this concept of who God has made me to be, as I've grown into maturity, I've also grown into confidence. 

I don't hide my face behind a hat anymore. 
I don't hide my chest under slumped shoulders. 
I walk with purpose, not even wondering if others are noticing. 
I live with the confidence that I belong wherever it is I've chosen to be in the moment. 

I think cleaning houses (my work) and traveling have only further added to my confidence. This idea was more fully cemented into my thoughts the other day just before I started cleaning my second house of the day. 

The lady I was cleaning for was upset because she'd hired my brothers to do her yard and they'd left early without telling her why. She wanted to know why they hadn't left her a note. I told her, "Because they didn't want to come into your house to find paper and pen."

"But you would have come in," she tells me. 
"True," I reply bluntly. "But I'm also way more confident." 

We laughed at that and joked about how girls are more communicative. But then I reminded her that my younger sister wasn't really all that more communicative. 

Afterward, I started wondering, why is it that I would go into a strange house to take paper and pen to communicate with the woman I worked for, but my siblings wouldn't have? And even besides that, I'm constantly communicating with the people I'm around. 

-By communicating, I mean sharing details critical to our current activities, not conversing. Though I converse, too ;)-

I thought about this for quite a while as I cleaned that woman's house. First I remembered back to my early teens and I remembered many awkward moments that could have been saved simply by communicating. 

Why hadn't I communicated? 
Because I lacked confidence. 

I lacked the self-assurance to express myself with the conviction that what I said needed to be said. 

  • I believe my first step to achieving confidence was simply letting go of that fear of speaking. 
  • The second step was learning to not care if others accepted what I had to say. 
  • The third step was learning how to articulate what needed to be said. 
  • The fourth step was failing and realizing that the failure didn't define my value
  • The fifth step was realizing that what I do comes from the value that God gave me as an individual
  • The sixth step is being okay with not feeling competent and doing it anyways 

In a way, confidence is bravery for everyday life. You may not know how, but because of your self-assurance you never say, "I can't."

Confidence is letting others know you are capable. They ask, and I answer, "I can" because even if I haven't yet done it I know I will learn how to do it. 

Confident is knowing you can succeed. You don't ask for permission, you don't ask, "am I confident", you don't even try. You just do. Confident people only ask questions when it's time to learn because knowledge adds to confidence. But even then, you ask as if the answers matter

Confident people always lead even if they are following. 

And it's not simply not caring what others think. A self-deprecating person doesn't care if others love them. Confidence is giving yourself permission to be the best you can be. 

Confidence is allowing yourself to be complete in or out of your element. 

And even if you fail, as I said before, confidence doesn't waver. Failure only owns you if you allow it to. Our work doesn't determine our value but reveals our values. One's value is determined worthless only when they have decided to allow failure to become a part of their identity. 

Confidence is embracing stress. Lots of it. And it means not running away when you're called to lead many or use the voice God has given you. 

Mainly, confidence is capable, content, communicative. 

But ... "This sounds like pride!" 

What is pride? 
I'm going to say something very controversial. 
Pride at its root is not evil. 

PRIDE is:
contentment in one's achievements, satisfaction, joy, pleasure in work. 

But ... "The Bible says ..." 

Arrogance is evil. 

Just as love has many meanings and philosophies from agape love to lust, so does pride have many variations, from satisfaction to achievement. 

ARROGANCE is:
haughtiness, egotism, self-importance, conceit, superiority.

A quick test to tell if your confidence has crossed the line into arrogance. Are you humble and who do you worship?
A quick test to find out if you're thinking less than you should of yourself. Are you accomplishing the things that God would have you do, or do you hide behind pity and self-hate? 


Do not waste the talents God has given you. (Matthew 25:14–30)

You have worth. Live up to it, and do so boldly. 

Any guesses as to what influenced this title? Hint: from a kids' cartoon/ book. 

Proverbs 28:1
The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion.

2 Corinthians 3:12 
Therefore, since we have such a hope, we are very bold."



SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT:
I'm thrilled to say I will not be joining the chaos of NANO this year. I wish all of my writing friends long lasting brains and fountains of words. As for myself, I will learn some more German, hike wherever takes my fancy, and write wonderful stories in my own time. Maybe I'll even write a story IN German on one of my hikes. Who knows? ;)


Comments

  1. This post was just incredible! So many quotes I'm going to have to come back and reread. I really struggle with confidence and with seeing myself properly, so thank you for doing this post! I think I'll be coming back to it often.

    I too am not doing NaNo this year, though I do hope to at least try writing almost everyday this month. Fingers crossed!


    Alexa
    thessalexa.blogspot.com
    verbosityreviews.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ahh thanks, Alexa! TH I feel I need to read it more myself, if I can say that without being arrogant lol. Confidence is something that we can always work on I think.

      Writing daily is a great goal! I think I'll just try to go for finishing a short story as I really need to do some creative writing.

      Delete
  2. Ahh, I love this post! Confidence is so important

    ReplyDelete
  3. I really like this post!

    astordetective.blogspot.com

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