One day, I wrote something about confidence. It went a little bit along these lines: ‘I was skating, someone was excellent at it; I was mesmerised by their skill, and after a few knocks of my own, I slowed down because I lacked confidence…’ At that point, I closed my Mac and gave up that writing for the trash heap. I didn’t have the confidence to finish writing the piece (or skate). I really had nothing to bring.
Last night at Bible study, we looked at what stops us from walking in our God-given authority. Intimidation was at the top of the list. Intimidation that pushes us down, takes the wind out of our sails, makes us feel unworthy, not enough, or unacceptable. Intimidation that says, ‘You are not good enough and why did you ever think you were?’
Intimidation is the opposite of confidence. A tactic of the devil, and often rooted in our self-consumption, it keeps us from knowing who we truly are in Christ and makes us believe we can’t succeed.
Intimidation keeps us from the victory we can have over all areas of our life by causing us to question whether God’s promises are indeed true. Whether God’s Word is true.
Intimidation causes us to forget our worth and value.
While trying to help my son write a story from a first-person perspective, I spent much time encouraging him that he is that character and that he can write from the new character’s perspective.
It was so important for his confidence that he didn’t feel intimidated by all of the excellent writers around him, and that he was confident in his ability. I got him to clench his fist and say, ‘I can do this. I am capable. I am Jack (Jack is the character’s name).’
Working on his belief about himself was crucial to overcoming the intimidation and then developing his confidence. To know, on the inside of himself, that he CAN write, that he is able to, but that he just needs to have a go.
Afterwards, I realised that while he was clenching his fist and speaking out the possibility that maybe he did have this gig, I also needed to own that statement for myself. I too needed to believe there was a possibility I could do this, that I could be Jack.
I was reminded of this:
‘For the Lord will be your confidence, and will keep your foot from being caught,’ Proverbs 3:26
‘For you have been my hope Sovereign Lord, my confidence from my youth,’ Psalm 71:5
And from the New Testament:
‘Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.’ 1 John 5:14-15
Therefore let us [with privilege] approach the throne of grace [that is, the throne of God’s gracious favour] with confidence and without fear, so that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find [His amazing] grace to help in time of need [an appropriate blessing, coming just at the right moment]. Hebrews 4:16
My confidence in who I am is solid when it is founded on the person of Jesus. Jesus, on the cross, made confidence and acceptance available to me. There is no need for me to be intimidated anymore.
My confidence in teaching, in skating, in writing, in being a good mother or a loving wife, and my ability to succeed and achieve is most effective when I meditate on who I am in Him and how He has made me to be exactly who I am.
It is up to me to choose to agree with Him. It is up to me to trust Him to change me and overcome all of those areas where I am intimidated.
It is for liberty that we have been set free, find your confidence in Him. He will always give it to you.