Insecurity is like an emotional cancer. If one infected area is left untreated, it can quickly spread all over, leaving it almost impossible to know where to begin the fight. So today, I’d like to break down the different emotional platforms insecurity can grab hold of, and begin tackling them one-by-one, with God.
Appearance & How Other’s View Us
This one is a tough one for a lot of people. It seems like every time I look in the mirror, I go over a very negative check list:
- How can I hide my blemishes?
- Which shirt can hide my stomach?
- How do I hide the spots where my hair has fallen out?
- Can I make my nose look smaller?
I could keep going, but you get the picture. We all have things we want to hide or fix. Unfortunately, these insecurities I have make me instantly look to those features on others around me to see how I measure up. I see someone with perfect skin or thick hair or a totally flat stomach, and I allow that to defeat me.
The truth is, when we question our worth based upon our appearances, we’re essentially saying our mountain-moving, ultimate healing God came up short when He created us. So let’s fight those thoughts with the truth God tells us. Write these on your mirror and before you pick apart the features you think God messed up on, read these instead:
- Psalm 139:13-14 – For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
- 1 Peter 3:4 – Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.
- 1 Samuel 16:7 – But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Satan has a way of convincing us that our sins are so great that God wants nothing to do with us. I believed that lie for so long, and quite honestly, it’s still a struggle for me. Fighting against these lies can not only be a daily battle but sometimes even an hourly battle. It’s a constant fight to choose to accept the truth about what God says versus the lies I’ve believed for 28 years of my life.
We’re still going to stumble, fall, and mess up. Instead of allowing those lies to keep holding us down, it’s time we cling to the truth. Someone once told me, that if I continue to dwell in my past, it’s like saying what Jesus did on the cross wasn’t enough. It’s like saying it was good enough to cover a few things, but what I did? Nope, not enough. So, let’s cling to the truths God tells us.
- 2 Corinthians 5:17 – Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
- Psalm 103:12 – as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.
- Isaiah 1:18 – “Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.”
This is where insecurity has me the deepest– questioning my purpose. Your purpose is unique and unlike anyone else’s. You may have a similar gift as someone else, but God has a cool way of uniquely and individually using our gifts in big ways.
I’m currently trying to decide if the ability to write is something God wants to use through me. As I process these thoughts, I find myself focusing on the negative questions again:
- Why am I doing this?
- Who am I to think I can make a difference?
- Who will even listen to what I have to say?
- Won’t people judge me now that they know I struggle?
Whatever your ability is, you might have had similar thoughts. It’s important to pause when we’re having these feelings of doubt and focus on our true intentions. Ask questions like:
- Why do I want to do this?
- Is this for God, or is this for me?
- Can anyone, even just one person, benefit from this?
Whatever the answers to those questions are, make sure you’re looking to God first for the answers. It’s okay to ask people you trust for advice, but ultimately, we answer to God.
If God wants to use us, we need to remember that it won’t be done with our own strength, it’ll be done with His. I don’t know about you, but it’s much easier having confidence in God than having confidence in myself. Here are some verses when you’re fighting against the insecurities about your abilities and/or purpose (I’m listing the most here because this is where I’m struggling most right now):
- Ephesians 2:10 – For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
- Ephesians 6:10 – Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.
- Jeremiah 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
- James 1:17 – Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.
- Philippians 4:13 – I can do all this through Him who gives me strength.
- Proverbs 3:5-6 – Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.
- 1 Corinthians 12:5-6 – There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.
- 1 Corinthians 2:9. But, as it is written, ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”
Many doctors say there are certain unhealthy habits or foods that can “feed” your cancer, like sugars and processed foods. Similarly, there are a lot of unhealthy behaviors we can be accustomed to that will “feed” our insecurity. Let’s break down a few of them now, so we can try to break from these habits quickly.
Comparison and Social Media
Stop comparing your appearance, your journey, your faith, your purpose, etc. to anyone else’s. God doesn’t call us to be like our friends or family. He calls us to be like Him. Everyone you meet has their own battles and insecurities that they’re fighting against.
If someone around you succeeds in something, choose to not make it about yourself. Celebrate their victory, and remember that blessings aren’t a limited resource. When God blesses someone else with something, it doesn’t mean He takes away another person’s blessing simultaneously. Our God has infinite power and ability (Isaiah 55:9 – “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”)… So stop thinking otherwise.
If we want to change our thought patterns, it’s important that we stop saying certain things out loud. We need to stop proclaiming our self-defeating thoughts and start proclaiming truths instead.
Instead of saying, “I’m not good enough,” read Isaiah 40:31 out loud:
“but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”
Instead of saying, “I’m not strong enough,” read Joshua 1:9 out loud:
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Instead of saying, “I’m too far gone, “read 2 Corinthians 12:9 out loud:
“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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
It’s so hard to stop the people-pleasing tendencies. Almost every day, I have a moment when I finally ask myself “WHY DO I CARE?!” Again, we need to remember that the only opinion that truly matters is God’s. Here are some verses to cling to when we’re allowing the opinions of others outweigh what God calls us to do:
- Galatians 1:10 – For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.
- Proverbs 29:25 – Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe.
- Romans 12:2 – Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
All in all, insecurity is real and it grows at an incredible rate. It’s important to cling to truth instead of the lies our insecurities tell us. Another point that is important to remember, is that we aren’t meant to fight this battle alone. If you’re feeling these thoughts, reach out to someone you trust the most. We need to continue encouraging each other and fighting the battle together.