I needed the following article. I often struggle with these feelings of insecurity. I thought maybe this would bless you today also!
by Charles F. Stanley
If you are battling insecurity, how do you overcome it? How do you win the victory and begin to live truly free of Satan’s negative, self-defeating obstacles? One of the most important steps is to ask God to expose the problem of insecurity. As painful as it may seem, be willing to open up your heart to Him and confess your feelings of low self-esteem. This is the key step to healing, and it is an essential step to gaining God’s strength for your situation. As a young man, David had tremendous courage even though his brothers ridiculed him and questioned why he showed up on the battlefield to fight Goliath. A courageous spirit is not something that we receive at birth. We gain courage through faith in God.
When David dared to stand up and volunteer to face the Philistine giant, his oldest brother scoffed at him, saying, “Why have you come down? ” (1 Sam. 17:28). In other words, “You are not equal to the task. Why are you even here? You are not doing anything worthwhile. After all, your chief occupation is just taking care of a few sheep.”
Perhaps you have felt the same way. God places a challenge in front of you, and your first thought is, I can do this! But then the enemy whispers words of discouragement to your heart. At first he chides you with simple comments. As you continue to move forward to complete the task, he sets landmines of insecurity in your path to explode and cause deep frustration and discouragement.
The enemy is relentless in his attack on your mind. If he notices you turning a fearful or insecure ear to listen to his accusations, he will open up a full assault on your emotions until you have collapsed in the dust of disappointment.
When we feel insecure, we feel hopeless, helpless, overwhelmed, and unable to accomplish anything. It involves a feeling of inner turmoil, and that is exactly what the armies of Israel were feeling as they faced the Philistines. That is what Moses struggled with for a brief second in time. The way to overcome insecurity is to anchor your heart, soul, and mind to the unshakable love and power of the living God through faith in Jesus Christ.
You can’t enjoy life if you feel insecure.
You can’t accomplish the goals God has given you if you feel overwhelmed and fearful. And the truth is, God never meant for you to struggle with feelings that lead to defeat. You may not find yourself facing enemies with the physical strength of Goliath, but if you live long enough, sooner or later you will meet the enemies of discouragement, hopelessness, and fear. At some point, each one of us will battle insecurity.
Acknowledge your feelings of insecurity.
God already knows exactly what you are feeling, and He has a plan to help you view your life differently—from His perspective, which is one of hope and potential. Ask Him to help you identify your insecurities. Be honest and ask, “What causes me to feel insecure?” Maybe a certain situation brings thoughts of inadequacy. Once you identify the problem area, you can go to work on changing your incorrect beliefs with God’s help.
Make the decision to overcome insecurity.
If you have never trusted Christ as your Savior, then you will not be able to overcome insecurity. You can work hard to lessen the fallout from this landmine, but you can conquer it only through Christ. It requires a walk of faith with the Savior. Recognizing there is a problem may come quickly, but dealing with the root can take time.
The moment you roll your struggle onto the Lord, you will begin to feel lighter and much more open to the blessings that God has for you. Remember, if you don’t set a goal to deal with this, then you will never be free from its entrapment. You must make up your mind to stop hiding behind your insecurity.
Realize that dealing with insecurity involves self-esteem.
The way you view yourself is not necessarily the way you are. Too many people see themselves from a negative viewpoint. Some may be prideful and not see the effects of insecurity on their lives. Regardless, to deal correctly with insecurity, you must gain the proper perspective. Ask God to show you how He sees your life. Refuse to focus on the negative.
Instead, focus on the Holy Spirit, who lives inside you. The best way to do this is to immerse yourself in the Word of God. His Word is powerful— (Heb. 4:12). When you read what God has to say about you, you gain an entirely different viewpoint. In times of sin, God may discipline you, but He never condemns or belittles you. Therefore, as you study the Scriptures, you begin to think differently and then act differently. Actions always follow what we think.
If you have a negative mind-set, you will have a negative view of life—particularly who you are. God wants you to step away from destructive feelings and thoughts. He has good plans for your life and sees you as a person of tremendous potential because of the life of His Son, Who lives within you.
Focus on positive qualities. Stop the negative self-talk.
Even though the odds were stacked against him, David did not hesitate to confront Goliath. Joseph did not lie around in prison complaining that he had been wrongly treated. He surveyed his circumstances from a godly viewpoint and concluded that because of the potential his life contained, he could run the jail if God gave him the opportunity.
That was exactly what happened: (Gen. 39:22). Is there something that God wants you to do, but you have held back because of insecurity? He is waiting for you to obey Him and to leave all the consequences to Him. He knows when you are worried and fearful, but He has given you an anchor to your soul—the Lord Jesus Christ, who is your immovable source of strength and comfort. Trust Him. Obey Him and watch God work on your behalf.
Ask God to help you visualize His work in your life.
David had to see beyond his circumstances, which included facing a literal killing machine. Goliath’s presence intimidated an entire army, but not David. Standing on the brink of the battle, he immediately thought back to the times the Lord gave him the strength to fight a bear and a lion to protect his father’s sheep. He had the right attitude because he was focused on the right thing: “I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have taunted” (1 Sam. 17:45).
Saul wanted David to use his personal armor and weapons, but David refused. God loves for us to trust Him purely and simply. Goliath was defeated and killed that day by a young boy—a lad who was jeered by his brothers. His choice of weapons—five smooth stones, a sling, and a courageous mind-set. Just to make sure you remember well, David’s first stone hit the target. God has a victory waiting for you, but it cannot be won with insecurity.
Stop comparing yourself to others.
The moment you compare yourself to another person, you set yourself up for failure. You also derail God’s plan to use you in someone else’s life. Few, if any of us, can honestly compliment another person while we are feeling insecure about ourselves. When we compare ourselves to others, we usually feel threatened as we battle feelings of insecurity and low self-esteem.
Ask God to show you what He has planned for your life.
There are people who waste a great deal of time chasing dreams that are not the ones God has designed for them. The result is frustration and disappointment. We will never go wrong keeping our eyes set on Jesus and doing whatever He leads us to do.
Avoid the trap of blaming someone else.
There comes a point when we have to stop pointing our finger at others and saying they are the reason for our insecurities. Parents, teachers, and family members have a powerful impact on our lives, but the greatest influence comes from our personal relationship with the Savior, who always is on our team—pulling for us, believing in us, and cheering for us every single day. At times we will fail, but He will never withhold His love from us. You can leave your insecurity behind because God will never disappoint you when you are living in the center of His will.
Reward yourself when you do the right thing.
Many people hesitate about this point. They trust God and gain a victory, but then they stop short of enjoying His goodness by allowing Him to bless them. The author of Hebrews wrote, “Without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him” (Heb. 11:6). If you have successfully reached a goal, then take time to bask in God’s goodness and pleasure. Nothing is more rewarding than sensing God’s smile and relaxing in His presence.
The major hurdle to overcoming insecurity is overcoming your doubt of God’s Word.
Remember, we are more than conquerors. There is nothing too great for God. Whatever you face in this life, He will bring you through it. I could have allowed my inadequacies to keep me from living the life that God designed for me. But I refused to allow Satan to prevent me from experiencing the joy of having a personal relationship with the Savior. I feasted on the Word of God and kept reminding myself that nothing was impossible for Him.
Set your mind on being the person God wants you to be, and see what happens. I can tell you from experience that nothing will be the same.
Charles F. Stanley, Landmines in the Path of the Believer (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 2007), 80–86.