Posts Tagged ‘self-esteem’

Confidence vs. Self-Esteem

Monday, September 17th, 2012

God commands us to have confidence over and over in Scripture. We are to be bold and courageous (Joshua 1:9), we are to walk boldly to the throne of God to receive help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16), and we are to reach out to the lost (Matthew 28: 19-20), which requires boldness. To have confidence is not sin. We derive our confidence from God.

Self-esteem is not the same as confidence. Self-esteem is thinking more highly of yourself than you ought to think (Philippians 2:3). But humility and confidence are not opposites. People who are greatly used by God are BOTH humble and confident. They know who they are in Christ, and they boldly follow God and lead others closer to Christ.

When God commands us to walk boldly to His throne to receive help in time of need, He wants to grant us confidence so that we possess that confidence, and that confidence is OURS. The confidence that I have in Christ is MINE. It belongs to me because God gave it to me.

So many Christians (like this Beth Moore Basher) say that we’re not allowed to have confidence, because it’s God’s. Oh, really? Just because it came from God doesn’t mean it’s not given.

Most women think they are pieces of dirt. And because we think of ourselves as garbage, believing lies from the enemy, we accomplish nothing for Christ. Instead of splitting hairs about the word “confidence,” I would much rather tell a woman that she is dearly loved by Christ, who gave up His life for her. God created her for a purpose, and she needs to ask God what her gifts, talents, and life purpose is. After salvation, when God is in the process of transforming her, she becomes more and more beautiful. You can see it in her face. She becomes more and more like Christ.

And as she becomes like Christ, she can stand on the Word of God and not believe the lies from the enemy that are crippling. She then has deep confidence in God, and it’s HERS. The confidence belongs to HER, and it shines out of her face.

It’s not a sin to be confident. To be used by God full blast in your life, you must be bold as a lion. Yes, it comes from Christ, but it’s GIVEN to us. That confidence permeates every aspect of our lives, and we are used maximally for His kingdom.

Our Actual Value in Christ

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

value-in-christWe are born into sin, and there is nothing inherently in us that has any value whatsoever. I’m sick of people saying that we have value, and that’s why Christ died for us. It’s the opposite. We were helpless in our sin; we couldn’t help but sin; we are all selfish pigs. All of us deserve hell. No one deserves heaven. If we had any idea how horrendous even the slightest sin is to God, we would get a grip and fall on our faces in the dust. God is holy. We are not. Look at the impossible chasm.

It’s because of God’s mercy that He chooses us and gives us faith so that we can love Him back. We can’t even take credit for the faith, because that is a gift from God. It’s the transformation that gives us worth. At salvation we become a new creation; that new creation has infinite value. We now have worth because of Christ.

Many people have the erroneous view that we continue to be rotten sinners after salvation. Not so. Scripture says we are saints. Our flesh causes us to sin against our will (Romans 7:15-24). The core of our being is now good, not only because Christ is there, but because He has changed us to reflect Him in a way that nobody else can. In heaven as well as here on earth, people will be able to get to know God because of what He has done in our lives. That’s why testimonies are so powerful. I’m not talking only about conversion. I’m talking about how God is in a continuous process of changing us. For example, I used to be ruled by anger, and now I’m not. God has broken the chains. Each Christian should have ten or twenty testimonies of how God has miraculously changed them. If you’re not growing, you’re not reflecting Christ, and you’re missing out on a lot of joy. Seeing the impossible is so incredible. The Spirit of God brings the fruit of the Spirit, and you don’t even have to work for it except to yield to God and obey to the best of your ability. God will do the rest.

Many people believe in a Christ-filter. They believe that after conversion, they are still filthy sinners, and that God looks at us through Christ, and He doesn’t see our sin because of His propitiation for us. Basically, they are saying that only Christ is in heaven, because everyone else is rotten and God can only look at Christ. But this is not true. Christ has transformed us to be holy. I myself am holy because Christ made me holy at the moment of salvation.

The first time I heard about my true value in Christ, I was floored. For years as a teenager, I had struggled with depression and wanted to die. It wasn’t until my now-husband Alan opened the Word of God to me and expounded His Word for three hours from Romans 6, 7 and 8 that I finally understood and felt clean. I wanted to shout from the rooftop that we don’t have to wallow in sin. We are a new creation that is holy and wants so desperately to do what is right. The first question Alan asked me was, “Do you desire to please God in the deepest core of your being?” I said, “Yes.” “Do you realize that it’s only the flesh, the world, and Satan that cause you to sin? When you die, all three fall away, and you are ready for heaven without sin. This is the truth.”

I couldn’t believe it. I had to see it with my own eyes. After Alan dropped me off at my house, I ran to my bedroom, opened my Bible, and wept. To this day, I still have tiny notes all over my Bible. I discovered that I was free from the power of sin. I sin not because I want to, but because of my flesh, and I have the power to gain victory over the flesh. I didn’t have to feel like a piece of dirt any more. I had a way to reflect Christ that was beautiful and unique. I finally understood my worth in Christ, and I was free.