We have felt insecurities of various kinds at different points in our lives. For example, we may have felt insecure about our age, body size or shape, height, the pitch of our voice, social status, family, educational background, e.t.c. Insecurity makes us uncertain about ourselves and leads to a lack of confidence. In addition, insecurities cause us to see ourselves in comparison to others and not as who we really are in Christ.
Insecurities will also cause us to envy those we think are better than ourselves. It deviates our attention from what God created us to be as individuals to what we believe society wants us to become. As a result, many have fallen prey to doing things like plastic surgery, extreme makeup modifications and sometimes pretence. Insecurities push us to live in fear since we feel like we are not good enough. It sinks the estimation of self which would make us anxious about what is and what may come. Yet, we have been called to trump over fear, low self-esteem, anxiety, worry, strong-holds, negative self-concept, inferiority complex, imposter syndrome, feelings of unworthiness, and everything else that is not from God; Romans 8:37 says, “…No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us..”
There was a time when I couldn’t even stand to speak in front of a crowd because I had added weight which led to me losing my self-esteem completely, or when I could stay indoors because of the acne I had all over my face. These were moments of self-loathing for me. I felt worthless and couldn’t accept myself for who I was. I remember asking myself in a pool of tears: ‘When am I going to be like the ladies in the magazines? When will the weight go? Will the acne stay on my face for the rest of my life? Am I ever going to be beautiful again?” Do you have any insecurities? What makes you feel insecure? Is it normal to have insecurities? Is it something one can wish or pray away?
“Lord, Take Away My Insecurities”
Since insecurities generally make us feel as though our value has depreciated, many insecure Christians would pray, “Lord, please take away my insecurities”. I mean, who wouldn’t want to live free of insecurities? However, as much as such a prayer is proper and desirable, we might want to change the attitude of our hearts to: “Lord, how can I navigate through my insecurities.” This is a helpful place to be because the truth is we will always have insecurities. Some insecurities may be short-term, while others long-term. An example is a girl who gets pregnant in High School might feel insecure about being a teenage mum for a good portion of her life, while another will feel insecure about what they have worn that day. However, this insecurity will only last as long as they have that attire. Praying, therefore, for strength to go through every insecurity we feel and those that may come is far more beneficial.
Life is all about transitions. As women, for example, we start as babies, then grow into young girls and then teenagers; at this point, we discover the changes in our bodies. As adults, we might begin to accept the changes we experienced as teenagers and know how to live with them. Afterwards, if God wills, we become wives and mothers. So many things happen to our bodies when we become mothers and even our outlook on life changes. Through all these stages, we must remember that each of them is God-ordained. None of it happens outside of his perfect will. God has indeed numbered every single day of our lives (Job 14:5).
As I earlier mentioned, I have had insecurities for most of my life as a woman. While I was recently doing my devotion, I read 2 Corinthians 12:9: But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. From this portion, I learned that the strength we receive from God might sometimes not translate into the removal of our insecurities. Instead, he may choose to glorify himself in our lives through our insecurities. When the Holy Spirit dwells in us, we become like a house under renovation. He comes not only to give us value but to also teach us to depend on him wholly. People like Moses, the stammerer (Exodus 4:10), remind us that our insecurities don’t have to go for God to use us. Moses may have been insecure about his speech, but God still used him as a prophet and leader of the people of Israel.
Being Who God Calls Us to Be
It’s one thing to have insecurity, and it is another thing to accept that your value is tied to your insecurity. The latter will likely lead one to seek validation from other people, which is in itself a super exhausting affair. Therefore, becoming children of God, which is essentially what God has called us to be (John 1:12-13), and living in light of that truth might not take away our insecurities but will instead help us look for approval from the ultimate source, God.
Though we often fall short, this will never thwart God’s work in our hearts through the Holy Spirit (Philippians 1:6). The Holy Spirit seals us as adopted children of God and hence heirs together with Christ (Romans 8:15-18). So we have to choose to be who God has called us to be and walk in who he says we are over the voice of our insecurities, often asking ourselves, what does God say of me? God says we are his children, and that’s all we need to know. That the creator of the Universe calls the little you from wherever you are, in whatever state you are in his beloved child. We know that God loves us, and because of his love, he has given us the right to be called his children.
It all Works Together for Good
As women, we often disqualify ourselves from taking roles and positions because we feel inadequate. We fail to realize that God has already factored in our failings and still intends on working in and through us. I will still refer to Moses in Exodus 4:10, where he said to the Lord, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent in the past or since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.” He was disqualifying himself from taking up a role God had ordained him for. I can only imagine how we have allowed the voice of our insecurities to stand in the way of being who God has called us to be, in our homes, our communities, organisations, ministry, the nation, and the world at large!
Until we see ourselves through the lens of God’s word and choose to be who God has called us to be, we will continue to live in the shadows of our insecurities. God desires to use us in expanding his Kingdom on earth. We must always remember that we are not alone; in God’s eyes, we are beautifully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). Therefore, we are free to place our identity firmly in Christ despite our insecurities as we trust him to use them for our good and his glory.