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When You Feel Like You’re Not Enough

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Have you ever had that awful, sinking feeling of not being enough . . . not smart enough or good enough?

For weeks I had felt inadequate and incompetent about everything — from the way I parented to the way I served God in ministry to the way I organized my time and my life. It got so bad one day, I literally begged God to pleeeaaasse take away my feelings of insecurity.

He didn’t answer the way I hoped, but instead He showed me what I needed to see in the most unexpected way. That afternoon, while I was putting on make-up in my bathroom, I turned around to put something away and noticed a huge nine-foot shadow on the wall behind me. I’m only 5’2″ so the humongous shadow caught me by surprise.

As I stood there looking at the shadow it dawned on me: I could only see the shadow when I turned away from the light. Not only that, I had created the huge shadow by blocking the light from above my mirror.

In that moment, I sensed God showing me something I will never forget: My insecurities create shadows of doubt over my heart and soul when I turn away from the Light of God’s truth about me.

Shadows are created all around us when something blocks light and so it is with the shadow of doubt.

When we focus our thoughts on how inadequate we feel, or what others think about us or how we’re performing compared to someone else, we cast a shadow of doubt in our minds by blocking the light of God’s Truth in our hearts.

But we were not designed to block the light. We were created to live in the Light by focusing on what God thinks about us instead of what we think about ourselves.

Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” {John 8:12, NIV}. When we follow Jesus closely and completely in our thoughts, turning away from doubts and lies, we can find lasting security and confidence in Him.

Feeling paralyzed by uncertainty and insecurity is not where God wants us to live. Instead, He calls us to purposefully shift our focus from our feelings of inadequacy to the promises of His sufficiency in our lives.

When Jesus spoke to the people in John 8:12, He called them out of darkness. And each day He calls us as well, to walk in truth {Light} as we replace feelings of low self-confidence with lasting soul-confidence.

So the next time you feel like you’re not enough, pause for a minute to recognize you’re standing in the shadow of self-doubt, and turn your heart toward the Light by focusing your thoughts on God’s truths instead. Click here to keep reading 3 powerful truths and a prayer we all need to replace our feelings of “not enough” with God’s promises! I’m hosting this conversation over at (in)Courage today, and I’d love for you to join us there!

~Renee Swope,
author of A Confident Heart

Never Alone

JESUS IS THE ONLY ONE

 

Alone again. That’s what she must have thought as she walked to the well all by herself that day.

But she wasn’t alone for long. Jesus was there. Yet, she didn’t know who He was and she couldn’t help but wonder why He was talking to her, a Samaritan woman.

When He spoke, she heard gentleness in His voice. 

Kindness and humility in His simple request for a drink.

In His eyes she saw acceptance, not judgment. Love, not hate.

Many of us know her as the Samaritan woman, but I like to call her Sam to make her feel more like the real woman she was. A woman who struggled with hurt, rejection, and loneliness.

Jesus was on His way to Galilee that day, but Scripture tells us “He had to go through Samaria” {John 4:4}. Yet theologians would tell us Jews considered Samaritans to be the scum of the earth and would do everything to avoid them by traveling around Samaria — but not Jesus.

He had to go through Samaria. Perhaps it be because He knew Sam would be there.

Women normally traveled together to the well, in the cool of the day, to avoid the heat of the sun since they carried heavy jars filled with water back to their homes. But Sam went by herself.

Many believe that instead of avoiding the scorching heat of the sun, she went to the well at noon to avoid the scorching pain of others’ rejection and judgment. Sam had been married five times, and was living with a man who wasn’t her husband.

When Jesus met her, Sam was running an errand, and running from those who knew of her failures, shame, and imperfections. Pursuing her with His perfect love, Jesus timed it so she would run into Him.

He initiated conversation and asked her for the one thing she had to offer, water. It wasn’t much, but it was a start.

Sam stopped and listened. She let Him speak words of assurance and acceptance into the broken, insecure, empty places of her heart.

Jesus intentionally pursued Sam in one of the loneliest parts of her day and in the same way, He is there in the midst of our sometimes lonely, imperfect lives. He is there when our disappointments and failures leave us empty and make us doubt our worth and purpose. (keep reading here)

I don’t know about you, but this summer I have had many days when I felt alone and just need to know someone sees me. Knows me. Pursues me. Jesus is showing me, He does. Let’s keep talking about this over on the inCourage blog, where I’m hosting today’s conversation and praying for friends like you in our online community. Join me there.