Chapter One ~ Discovering the Shadow of My Doubts.
So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. Hebrews 10:35-36
Renee begins the chapter stuck in self doubt about an upcoming speech she is to give at a women's conference. Doubt was something that had been with her from a very early age and robbed her of many joys in her life. Even now, as a grown woman in ministry, the patterns of doubt crept back into her thoughts.
Haven't we all been there? I know I have. And more so now that I am uncovering my truth. I've read and listened to many people who are experts in their field of study from yoga, to ministry, to writing and public speaking and everyone of them talks about self doubt. Seriously, if God really did put this passion and gift in my heart and I believe it wholeheartedly, shouldn't I be more confident? Maybe the doubt is my sign that I'm not supposed to be doing this. Sound familiar? "I can't do this." "Who am I to think someone wants to hear what I have to say?" "Things will never change." These voices of insecurity bring on the shadow of our doubt and let's be honest, there are days when the shadow is bigger than what we doubted in the first place.
Call it the enemy, call it your ego, call it patterns from early childhood, call it your bully, doesn't matter what you call it, we all experience it. But we really can work through it! WORK is the key word! And it's hard work at that. Because of the world we live in, taking these steps are not NORMAL and there are always going to be people around ready to knock us out of our confidence. That's their problem not ours. However, that's what makes it so tough. Because we believe and know in our hearts we CAN DO IT, it makes it all the more difficult when that enemy rears it's ugly head.
So what can we do? What resonates with me in Chapter One is that we can live daily (there's the work again) in the security of God's promises. It is going beyond just believing in Him, but really believing Him though the power of his words. Believing they are true no matter what my feelings or anyone else is telling me. And knowing we are not alone. Have that time of prayer, meditation and study EVERYDAY, regardless of how busy you are. If you need to get up an hour earlier or stop watching TV for an hour at night, this is a must. Surround yourself with support and positive people who will allow you to be vulnerable. Friends that have your six! (Meaning, they got your back looking for the enemy behind you.) Finally, give yourself a break! We all fall from time to time. That is why we must have the plan in place to get back up and keep moving forward. Let's do it together!
Chapter One ~ Booking Study
Praying God's Promises - write down this prayer and include in your daily devotion.
Lord, I pray that You would give me a confident heart in Christ. Take me beyond believing in You to truly believing You. Help me rely on the power of your promises and live like they are true. You say blessed is the one who trusts in You and whose hope and confidence are found in You. Those who hope in You will not be disappointed, because You work all things together for good for those who love You and are called according to your purpose.
When self doubt tells me I can't overcome my insecurities, I will believe your promise that all things are possible to whoever believes. I will not throw away my confidence, because you say it will be rewarded. I will persevere so that when I have done the will of God, I will receive what you have promised. My confidence is in Christ and I am no longer one who shrinks back and is destroyed, but one to believes and is saved.
Refection Questions and Discussion
1. What is your earliest memory of doubting yourself or feeling insecure?
2. Has insecurity ever kept you from doing something?
3. Describe what happens in your heart when you read God's word:
"Those who hope in me will not be disappointed" (Isa. 49:23)
"All things are possible to (her) who believes." (Mark 9:23 NASB)
"See, I am doing a new thing!" (Isa. 43:19)
4. How would you describe a woman with a confident heart?
5. Read Jeremiah 17:7. What does this verse promise and encourage you to do? Think of one situation where you could live in the power of this promise and describe what that would look like this week.
If you would like to join in further discussion I would love to hear from you and begin to gather an online group of supportive women! Please either comment on this post or message me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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