Growth in your spiritual life will be commensurate with your lack of confidence in yourself.
One of the many paradoxes of the Christian life is this thing we call ‘self-confidence.’ As little children our parents would encourage us to be confident. And, to a certain degree they were correct. A child scared of her own shadow—will probably not grow to up to be emotionally healthy. So there is a realm of self-confidence that is necessary and needed, in order to function in this world.
However, there is another realm of self-confidence that could be a boat anchor in your spiritual life. The Apostle Peter, made the mistake of trusting in himself. You will probably recall that when Jesus prophesied that the Apostles would all desert Him (Matthew 26:31) Peter boasted: “Even if everyone else deserts you, I will never desert you!” Yes! Boast on Peter.
Jesus drops the bomb on Peter’s self-confidence: “I tell you the truth, Peter—this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny three times that you even know me.” But,Peter’s self confidence is just beginning! Not to be out-done by Jesus, Peter again boldly asserts: “Even if I have to die with you, I will never deny you!”
Peter’s goal: Why put one foot in your mouth when you have two? As you probably know… Peter does indeed deny the Lord and forsake him.
Self confidence—while needed to function in life—can, on the flip side—drag you down in your spiritual life. Self-confidence puts the Lord in the passenger’s seat or perhaps even in the back seat of your car. Self confidence boasts in talents, abilities, position, worth, and status. Self confidence admires one’s self. Self confidence performs. Self confidence is professionalism.
Self confidence is prayerlessness. Self confidence does not fast. Self confidence is arrogant, boastful, pushy, and proud. Self confidence looks down on others. Self confidence says: ‘Lord, I can handle this.’
What if self-confidence is actually the curse of the modern church? What if the primary reason why our churches are not growing, souls are not being saved, followers of Christ are hardly discernible from non-followers——all have the same problem—self confidence!
Paul, who had all the potential for confidence said: …though I also might have confidence in the flesh. If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the flesh, I more so… Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ (Philippians 3:4.8 NKJV).
Growth in your spiritual life will be commensurate with your lack of confidence in youself.
How do you know you have no self confidence?
- You pray—lots!—often!
- You fast regularly
- You are humble—you serve others and love people unconditionally
- You don’t say: ‘I can’t do that’—because that is true about EVERYTHING
- You are not boastful and you don’t talk about yourself—you talk about Jesus
- Your favourite subjects are grace, mercy, and the Love of God
- Your favourite verse? Unless the LORD builds the house, they labour in vain who build it! (Psalm 127:1)
- This makes total sense to you. Jesus replied, “I assure you, the Son can do nothing by himself. He does only what he sees the Father doing. Whatever the Father does, the Son also does. (John 5:19)
- What was good for Jesus—is good for you!