For quite awhile I’ve been thinking about confidence as a mother, confidence as a Christian. I have plenty of times when I don’t feel very confident, so I’m pretty interested in paying attention to what the Bible says about confidence. (It’s more common than we think, and it’s not the same as pride.) Tonight I started doing some brainstorming of the truths or actions that give me greater confidence as a mother. Next post I’ll share some of my “confidence verses” with you.
- Understanding the diversity of the body of Christ. My sinful tendency is to exclude others just because they are not like me, and to feel like I don’t belong because I am not like them. The truth gives confidence: God WANTS diversity, and it can be ridiculously energizing when I start recognizing the role that personality plays into the choices I make as a mom. (I Corinthians 12)
- Faith that God will supply my needs and will provide needed wisdom. If I don’t know what to do, I assume I have freedom to choose. I’ve seen God redirect me when I’m choosing a way he doesn’t want me to go. I do better when I remember that many of my requests for wisdom are answered over time, and not in a single “aha” moment. (Matthew 6:33; Proverbs 3:5-6)
- Acknowledging that I will never be 100% consistent, no matter how hard I try. I am going to make mistakes, make decisions that my children don’t like, and change my mind about choices I’ve made. If I accept my imperfection, I’m not going to be devastated when I see it!
- Hearing the testimony of other mothers. God has brought some women in my life who have had genuine needs as mothers. I’ve watched God provide, and I’ve been grateful that they were not silent about what God has done in their lives and in the lives of their children. I love to hear how God is answering prayer, because it reminds me that He is faithful to answer my prayers, too. (Many places in the letters of Paul, but here are a few in Colossians: 1:3-11; 2:5; 4:9-14
- Crying out to God when I am clearly in over my head, and believing that he will answer. Sometimes the answer is unexpected, but God always provides. Remembering God’s faithfulness gives me confidence to take another step, make another choice. Hebrews 11:11
- Seeing God answer my own prayer requests! John 16:24
- Shrugging my shoulders at imperfection, and laughing at myself! I can only do so much. As long as I’m actively moving forward, I can trust the Holy Spirit to keep the next thing the important thing. I just can’t get bogged down in the past! (Philippians 3:12-14)
- Remembering to trust the Holy Spirit. I cannot make repentance in my children. I cannot make maturity. I can trust him to provide the perfect set of environmental circumstances that they need for God’s plan for their lives.I forget this often, but I’m also growing more confident in letting God do his job while I wait on him! Psalm 46:10
- Reviewing truth. I make a Scripture book. It’s like a journal, but it’s mostly where I write the verses that give me hope and strength. Then, when I am weak, my Scripture book becomes my Bible. Many of the truths that give me hope and confidence are short phrases that stick in my head for months: The Lord is MY shepherd; he gently leads those with young. God is my refuge and strength. Thy kingdom come. The eternal weight of glory. Blessed is she who believed!
Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past age, because she judged him faithful who had promised. Hebrews 11:11
I love this passage. Since we know about Sara’s lack of confidence in God from the Old Testament narrative, it’s encouraging to see that she ultimately chose to believe God. I love to notice what gave her strength: she judged him faithful who had promised. That truth gives me strength, too!