August 11, 2020
Self-Confidence Means Failure
This might sound a little cruel, but I find it amusing to watch some know-it-all tightly plan out a situation, only to have it all blow up in his face – the whole enchilada. Of course, this never happens to me, the control addict, and I’m sure this kind of thing has never happened to you either, right?
We all have experiences when pride and ignorance take us to the point we think we are actually God. It sounds ludicrous to say it. We act as if we know everything, can foresee the future, and have the power to deliver a perfect ending. Seeing it in plain black and white as I write this makes me ask, “What in the world was I thinking?”
Do you ever forget where you put something? Have you ever made the wrong choice in a situation? Have you been accused by your kids (or parents) of not hearing very well? Have you missed an appointment? Is there even one topic about which you know everything? Do you have trouble predicting the future? Recognizing and accepting the limits of your understanding is a good and necessary step in the growth process. The more we recognize and accept our limitations, the we understand we need help, then our relationship with God grows.
You see, we all have limits. But unfortunately, we don’t recognize where they are. So we live beyond our skills. Seems good, doesn’t it … getting more out of who we are? Unwittingly though, the reality is that we are putting our confidence in and getting our confidence from … ourselves! This means I am relying on me … what I bring to the table … what I can do.
The truth is that our confidence needs to come from God. We need to put our eggs in His basket … who He is … in His character … in His promises … in His instructions in the Bible. The assurance of God’s sovereignty, power, omniscience, reliability, love and sacrifice for us will allow us to grow the mind of Christ successfully and live life abundantly. We need Him continually … beyond our daily bread and blessings. We need Him for the many decisions we must make each day – all EIGHTY THOUSAND of them.
Today, identify areas of your life in which you play God. Where are you trying to control everything and rely on your own power and skills – leaving out God? Stop and say a prayer. Recognize your global insufficiency, but also pay attention to your daily limits. Turn to God first and frequently. Look to God to fill in the areas that are beyond your limits. Then you will start to gain confidence from Him and truly rest in Him. We have been designed to need Him moment by moment. Today and every day, whether the source of your confidence is God or the source is yourself or some other limited and ultimately impotent source is your decision, so choose well.
Dear Father, Lately I am becoming more aware of my need for You. I have noticed that many people around me have become increasingly confident, almost cocky about the accuracy of their opinions and decisions. However, I feel just the opposite. I feel like an iceberg: what I understand is above the water. What I don’t understand is below. I come to You, my Father, full of neediness and uncertainty. I am fully aware of Your sufficiency. I trust that You will supply all my needs according to Your riches. I have so many decisions to make and I am doubtful about my ability to make the right ones. I know that each decision moves me closer to or further away from You. Your Word teaches me that wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction. So, help me pass through the small gate and walk the narrow road that leads to You, my Lord. I pray this in the name of the One who always got it right, Jesus; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19
Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it. Matthew 7:13-14