illustration by Olena Tieriekhova

A couple of days ago, I was reading a book by Reene Swope titled Confident Heart and l got to a part where she said:

“You can only see the shadow because you have turned away from the light. Turn back toward the light”. I started to think about the shadows in my life. These are the voices of insecurity that cast shadows of doubt over my perspective and keep me from becoming the person I want to be—the man God created me to be.

Self-doubt blocks the promise of God’s power and truth to change us from the inside out so that we can live and walk in purpose. One classical example of a man who struggled with self-doubt is Moses. He was not a perfect man and he didn’t exactly fit the profile of a leader but God gave him the distinct responsibility of leading the Israelites out of slavery. Moses’ response to God’s call is typical, He says “who am l to appear before Pharaoh? Who am l to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt?” Sounds reasonable, Right? I mean he doesn’t have a perfect record (murderer) and he doesn’t even have any sort of leadership experience but God wanted to use him. God’s response wasn’t a pep talk or a motivational speech but He simply told him ‘I will be with you…”. May l present to you that we draw our sufficiency, strength, competence from God’s presence and not from our own abilities. God’s presence is all we need.

God’s presence in your life sets you apart from the others (Exodus 33 vs 15). When struggling with Self-doubt, the answer is not to look within yourself but to look to God who promises to be with us even as we journey through life’s unknowns. Moses first looked inward when he asked, “Who am l….” and if we read further he goes on to amplify this self-doubt and asks “What if they reject me?”, “What if they ignore me?”, these type of questions can destroy our faith and kill our purpose. But God addresses these questions with a series of miracles which shifts the focus from other people’s opinions to God’s glory. In essence, God was telling Moses that it’s not about what other people think, it’s about my Power.

Culture tells us to look within with supposedly empowering self-help stuff like “Believe in yourself” but silencing self-doubt is not about believing in ourselves. It is trusting God as the ultimate source of our sufficiency, power, creativity and talent. Sometimes It is so easy to take our focus off God, and shift it to our battles. When we keep our focus on the battle, we start to evaluate whether or not we can win by assessing the strength of our hands. We look at the weapons we have available, and we wonder if they are strong enough to bring us victory. We need to look towards the heavens, and invite God in to help us, His presence is all we need.

Maybe you’ve been convincing yourself that “you can’t”. But God tells us you can and He is reminding you that He knows you intimately. He knows your weaknesses , in-fact weaknesses are opportunities for God’s power to manifest and they can’t detract from His plans for your life. He says to you today, “Before you were born, I set you apart.” You’ve been set apart to do good works for His glory. The odds may seem stacked against you. The obstacles may seem insurmountable. But He is with you and he has appointed you to bear fruit in his name.


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