You’ll Never Be Perfect {and that’s a good thing}

I couldn’t silence the words used to describe how much I’d disappointed her.

An email filled with criticism had slipped into my inbox that week and it hurt my feelings … for days.

The shooting pain of failure, regret, and flaw-focused thinking struck like lightening through my heart.

That one email set off a storm of self-doubting emotions. It’s amazing what one person’s criticism can do.

When my children or someone criticizes me as a mom, I’ll start doubting myself as a mom. When someone criticizes me as a friend, it will doubt my ability to be a good friend. Ten people could say something nice to me or about me, but what I will remember most is that one person’s criticism. How about you?

After being tossed and turned by the winds of my people-pleasing tendencies, I finally called a friend to process my emotions and the harsh email. With wisdom she told me:

“Renee, you’ll never be perfect. And if you ever get to where you are, you will be all alone!” 

Boy, she was right!

I am not perfect.

I’ll never be perfect.

And if I ever get there, I will be all alone.

Sweet friend, I don’t know if you ever feel like a failure ~ completely imperfect and full of flaws – like I do sometimes. But here is what I do know ~

Jesus was the only perfect Person to walk this earth… yet He was constantly criticized.

But, guess what? Nowhere is it recorded in scriptures that Jesus ever doubted Himself. No matter what, He stayed secure in His purpose and confident in His calling.

That day, my friend spoke reality into my reeling feelings. And God used her wisdom to reminded me: Jesus depended solely on His Father’s approval. 

What His Father said {about Him} was all that mattered {to Him}. And that is what He wants for you, too.

WISGS_TEALBW_BoldItal
No matter what, God loves you and He is there for you… not to criticize you but to encourage you.

  • He is there in the midst of your sometimes lonely, imperfect life… when your disappointments and failures leave you empty and make you doubt your worth and purpose.
  • He is there when you’re going through the motions, aware of what needs to be done but afraid you won’t be able to do it all.
  • He is there when you’re criticizing yourself and questioning whether you have what it takes to be a godly woman.

He sees you. He notices all you do and He knows what you need. Today He is pursuing you with the gift of His perfect love — love that is patient and kind, love that keeps no record of your wrongs, love that won’t ever give up on you!

Swope_ConfHeartDevo_3DsmENTER TO WIN
Enter to WIN my new Confident Heart Summer Devotional gift pack! It includes a copy of my A Confident Heart Devotional, a beautiful prayer journal and a Starbucks gift card! 

Simply click “SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS” and do just that.
To enter to win, you must comment on my blog under this post. {All winners will be chosen from blog comments only.}

 


SomethingMore
Sometimes We Need More Than a Blog Post
Do you ever feel alone or unnoticed? Need a friend to walk with you and help you see how much you are loved, pursued and created for a purpose? If so, A Confident Heart may be just the book for you!

Looking for the perfect summer devotional? Each day my new A Confident Heart Devotional: 60 Days to Stop Doubting Yourself offers a personal, powerful and practical way to live in the security of God’s promises right where you are!

Comments

  1. Courtney says:

    Confidence is a daily struggle- it’s so easy to think about past hurts and believe I’m not good enough. I was told that I need to work on being more confidence and would love to read this to stop second guessing myself so much.

    • I read your book and enjoyed it so much. Yes, none of us will be perfect, but our Lord was and so

      thankful for that. He is the same today, yesterday and forever. He does not change, but we can as

      we rely on Him each day of our lives here on earth.

      Thank you for your blog each day.

      J. Peterson

  2. Leonora says:

    EVERY SINGLE DAY I am reminded that I am not perfect. I am my own biggest critic.

    One thing that helps me though is the LUXURY of standing on God’s promises. For example, in those moments of doubts I repeat to myself: “you may not be perfect, but you were fearfully and wonderfully made… created in the image of God–it doesn’t get better than that”

    “you have not because you ask not–ask God for help today in this area.”

    These simple statements and a ton of others help me through my most self-induced critical moments.

  3. Struggling with confidence is a fight I battle daily. What a wonderful reminder as a natural people pleaser I have a beautiful example in Jesus Christ to follow. He only aimed to please His Father’s will. Thank you for speaking truth and equipping us for the daily battle of the mind. To God be the glory!

    • Observing the way Jesus lived, loved and especially the way He let others’ opinions roll off His back… really helps the people-pleaser in me find a better balance!

      Praying Jesus will seal this truth in our hearts this week!

  4. christina says:

    I think emotional pain is like physical pain. one unkind word and we remember it like it first happened. then we feel like well i deserved that pain. the devil starts whispering depression into to our ears. one thing i have found helpful is to remind myself who I am in Christ.

  5. Thank you for the reminder that Jesus’ approval is the only one that we need. And that even in His perfection we are made acceptable and loved.

  6. Melanie says:

    It is so hard to get out of the cycle of not being good enough. And sometimes the more you try to get out, the farther you fall. It helps to sometimes do one thing you are good at and remember that.

  7. Thank you Lord for knowing just how I feel..No I’m not perfect .. and you know all about my pain

  8. Wow, thank you for this reminder of who and what our God came for…to love us and to forgive our imperfect beings. I have been called a perfectionist by many, I am ready to change that aspect of my life. I know I’m not perfect, then I need to stop trying to be. God loves me and will help me overcome this area of my life.

  9. Suzanne says:

    As a mom of grown kids, I have to continually release them to the Father and trust Him to apprehend their hearts. My job is to pray! I have to refuse to listen to the voice of the enemy. I did the best I could to raise a Godly seed. I need to keep my hope and faith in God that He remains faithful and His promises are sure!

  10. Sitting here wondering if the pile of laundry that has accumulated during the school year while I have been teaching will EVER be conquered this summer, and feeling like a complete failure as I always do, doubting my ability to hear God’s direction as to whether I should keep up the madness year after year at the expense of my children… Yet knowing that if I don’t, bills may not get paid. Is this my responsibility, or will God step in and provide if I sit back and trust my husband to do what he should so that I can do my job as a wife and mom? My thoughts are absolutely swirling this morning as I look around me at all that has to be done that cannot possibly be accomplished in the space of a summer, while all I really want to do is be mommy for a change. I just want to cry. Thank you for your timely message this morning. I can only do what I can do with what I have been given, and I do know for sure my Father loves me. I just need to understand better the approval part and remember that His grace is sufficient, and that in our weaknesses, He is made strong.

    • Melanie,

      Praying for you. Praying for God to direct your steps and praying for you to follow His steps. Praying for God to show you the way to be the wife, mom and all that HE has called and created you to be. I would also recommend that if you haven’t done Renee’s “7 Day Doubt Diet” that you register and work your way through the study. It’s a great start and an incredible free resource containing some of God’s promises to us to claim for ourselves.

      I’m attaching the link below for your reference.

      http://reneeswope.com/aconfidentheart/7-day-doubt-diet/

      Blessings and prayers,
      Donna

  11. Karen Pullar says:

    Waking to this msg this morn was truely God’s presence coming along side me, when I sensed the sheer struggle of loneliness. Growing up in a family where I, the youngest, was invisable, was crushing. My parents dealt with my brother & sister’s major issues but as the outwardly opposite situation of Sam, I was the good girl, but lent itself to being of little to no consequence. I would always do “the right thing” like the older brother in the prodigal son, yet was set adrift at a young age, alone and aimless. These 50+ years later, I still have echos of those struggles….as like you, I’ll never live up to all my high expectations, yet knowing that Christ has gone through these years with me truely has brought me through w/the peace that really does pass all understanding. Thank you for your faithfulness to share His words with us. :7) Karen

  12. I have been struggling with self doubt and feelings of failure for about two years. I’m great at offering support and advice to others, but I just can’t seem to keep myself out of this failure pit in my mind.

    • Cynthia says:

      Hi Anita,

      I come across as a confident independent woman because, like you, I find it easy to offer support and comfort to others. Now when I am feeling down or unworthy, I look in the mirror and offer myself the same advice I give to others. Then I find three things in my life that I am truly blessed with. Raises my spirits every time. Also, I read that if we go into each day with the attitude that we are working for and with God, it changes everything and takes the focus off of ourselves and our self-doubt. God bless. Cynthia

  13. “He sees you.” “He is there.” Wow, such powerful words I needed to hear right now. I am not perfect & I don’t have to be. In the midst of my imperfections, God is there for me & loves me. We cling to what we believe is the ideal perfect life-perfect marriage, perfect kids, etc. When we don’t live up to unrealistic expectations, we feel like we are a failure, we feel alone, & unloved. The only one who can make us feel whole is our Lord and Savior. He died for us so that we may live. We are never alone, he walks with us. We must turn to him as he is there for us in all that we do.

  14. I so needed this reminder. Thank you. Lately, I have allowed my husband’s beliefs to separate me from Jesus. He is a perfectionist, does not apologize for it and is extremely hurtful in what he feels is justified criticism when things are not meeting his expectations. I am very sensitive and already have low self confidence so additional criticism certainly does not help. I do not like the small town we live in, have no friends nor a church family. I miss having someone to pray with. Thank you for listening.

  15. Love this blog post & the P31 devotion. Great reminders of the encouraging, ever present, sweet love of Jesus!

  16. Annette says:

    People remind me of all the imperfections that I have. They remind me of all my failures and short comings. Its hard sometimes. But I am always reminded about how I have a perfect God that loves my flaws and everything about me. I love the verse”…..He will never leave you nor forsake you” Deuteronomy 31:6. He will never abandon me whenever I feel alone. We have an awesome God who loves us so much, words can’t even describe it. I am totally grateful and humbled by the thought of it.

  17. Brittney says:

    Reading A Confident Heart has reminded me that God created me with a purpose in mind. Every moment I doubt myself I am turning away from the path that God has planned for me as a wife, mother, and teacher. I struggle daily to live up to the purpose of my life and having self-confidence has been my first step to being the strong, Godly woman that I am intended to be!!

    • Brittany,

      Praising Him for all that He is doing in your life! It’s definitely a choice and a day by day journey. As a friend tells me all the time – Progress not perfection! Thanks for sharing and I often find myself reading and re-reading Chapter 12 of A Confident Heart when I find myself making the wrong choices.

      Blessings,

      Donna B
      Renee Swope’s Ministry Team

  18. Cynthia says:

    It has taken me a lifetime to come to where I am today but it was worth the journey. One of the most important lessons I have learned in this earthly life is that we are NEVER alone. God is with us in times of happiness and joy and just as importantly, He is holding us when we are experiencing sorrow, disappointment, self-doubt, and emptiness. Once I realized this, I found the phrase “I am with you” or “you are not alone” jumping out at me in all directions. We need only to seek Him and then we will find that we are truly never ever alone. God bless.

  19. Bobbie Rorie says:

    I loved this blog today. I struggle with issues of confidence sometimes on a daily basis. Often it’s whether I’m the wife I should be. Yes after 24 years together, I sometimes doubt my worth as a wife. I struggle with weight issues and have just been diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes. It is so comforting to be reminded that I am not alone. I have a friend in Jesus who is with me every moment of every day. What a beautiful thing that is! Thank You for this devotion and the reminder that we don’t have to be perfect. As someone who has struggled with the perfection complex especially in school, it is so refreshing to just let go and Let God!!

  20. Confidence in this world is a daily struggle, your blog reminds me not to look for approval from this world. I should keep my eyes, my heart and my mind in God’s word. Thank you for what you do. It is refreshing to find a positive, uplifting writer that keeps the focus on God.

  21. I have been reading your book A Condident Heart and I cannot begin to tell you the work God is doing in my life through the words in this book. It has spoken so strongly to some major needs in my life. I have faced some extremely tough times these past few months , then I woke up this morning dreading facing the day and trying to make good decisions as a christian mom. The words in your devotion today were like words spoken directly from Hod to quiet my soul. Thank you so much for those words that you shared.

  22. I have always struggled to be perfect, perfect in my parents eyes, perfect in my mother’s eyes, perfect in my eyes. I’ve never quite grasped the ability to be perfect in Jesus eyes. I’m hopeful that one day, I’ll accept the fact that Jesus perfect love is enough. Thank-you for your blog, for your book, and for sharing yourself.

  23. Courtney says:

    I truly feel as though this devotional was speaking to me personally this morning. I have second guessed myself all of my life. Within the last two years i have struggled to remain confident in gods plan for me. I dove head first into faith by quitting a well paying job after having my first child and going back to nursing school. Because of my new found faith i was able to succeed and graduated last december! Although the whole time i struggled for confidence in myself. I took the nclex and failed the first time and will now be taking it again tomorrow (june 25th). Any prayers would be much appreciated. I have been studying for the past 6 weeks feeling so lonely and unsure of myself even though i have put the time into it. I could use some encouragement to get me through this exam in order for me to be used as a vessel of god to give back and touch as many people’s lifes in this career. God i ask today to provide me with the confidence to go foward with your plan for me!

    • You can do this Courtney! Praying for your success with the exam and with your nursing career. You should be very proud of yourself. This world needs more caring nurses. Thank you for choosing this challenging but rewarding path. Good luck and hugs!

  24. Tammie Jones says:

    Thank you!! I needed this today! You will never know how much!

  25. I woke up this morning after a restless night with a heavy heart. The caregiver for my parents had emailed me last night to say she was leaving after 4 months with us to care for her grandma who had brain cancer. My parents are both disabled and I’m single with no siblings caring for them. How did I find your blog? Through the Bible Gateway Encouragement article you wrote about the Samaritan woman. When you mentioned “endless projects, laundry and diapers” I found myself encouraged to believe that Jesus is taking the time to meet with me in these stressful lonely days, and this blog tells me I’m valuable in His sight even though I feel so ostracized and worthless at the office since I started working part-time. Thank you for reminding me that God is with us in our struggles and that He hasn’t left us …

  26. “He sees you. He notices all you do and He knows what you need.”
    That was exactly the refreshing encouragement I needed this morning! I will be clinging to that reminder of God’s love and presence all day. Thank you!
    Beckey
    http://www.etsy.com/shop/queenbsbusywork

  27. Thank you for writing this amazing book! “Perfection” is a struggle for many and a personal one for myself. I hope this book is a blessing to many!

  28. Bonnie Ciolkosz says:

    After three failed marriages, being a domestic violance survivor and raising three kids on my own. I struggle every day. I do my daily devotions and honestly having the lord in my life I am not so alone. I try to make good decisions every day and I work very hard putting the train back on the tracks. I really could use prayers and help.

  29. We all receive messages or have different perceptions at a young age; mine was that I wasn’t good enough. I didn’t grow up in an abusive home nor was neglected with primary needs, but my family endured a lot of loss at a young age which caused some of my family to be absent when needed. I felt like no matter what I did, it wasn’t good enough, that I had to be good enough not only for myself but for those that we lost. It is a struggle so many face and a struggle that is hard to re-wire in ourselves. I’m interested in your book to see how to gain a confident heart. Thank you for today’s devotion.

  30. The gift you have bringing Gods word to us is a blessing. Tnsnk you for sharing your gift.

  31. Belinda says:

    I’m always doubting myself. I’m going through a divorce and I am happy to have come across your Blog. As a mother of 5 boys I need to be confident in myself. Thank you Renee for this awesome book!

  32. I am really struggling with confidence and acceptance right now. I’m def going to check out your book. Thank you for all you do.

  33. Rachel Robertson says:

    As I just began staying at home full-time with my kids and leaving my career, I have felt overwhelmed with the change. Some days I question my ability to have patience and strength to guide and school my children. Thank you for the encouragement today.

  34. Joyce Kaiser says:

    It would help me so much to receive the help of your package deal Renee I would use it to help me..I struggle so much and I do know God and I can get through things together…butI don’t always let God help me. Sometimes I get scared. I also try to be a good listener, and talk with my friends. I am very good at encouraging friends..I wish I could let God help myself too.
    I shall continue to work on things…I do know the Lord is awesome and I love the Lord.
    I just seem to doubt sometimes.

  35. Checking out the book for myself and my mom. I struggle with this daily also but my mom is in a state of serious depression and it all stems from her past and not letting go and believing that because of her past she isn’t good enough and no one loves or cares for her and she feels very alone and won’t listen to anyone. I pray she will listen to God. I plan to print this and let her read it and get her the book!! Thank you for writing the words God gives you to help others. God is good. He gives us what we need when we need it.

  36. Usually I rest in knowing God’s love for me but there are occasions when the enemy whispers doubt in my ear – getting better at recognizing it & waging war against his schemes to take me out! Thank You, Jesus, that You love us with an everlasting love & Your mercies are new every morning! I’d love to win the devo pack! Loaned my copy of you book to my sister!

  37. I have really been struggling at work recently. My coworkers have left me feeling distant and unworthy. It is so difficult when I try and find my joy and worth from the world and forget there is a Father that has never left me and is waiting for me to run back to him. I am so thankful he forgives me for neglecting Him.

  38. Just exactly the devotion i needed today! My favourite story in the Bible is Jesus and the woman at the well.

  39. charlotte says:

    Having any kind of confidence is a struggle for me. One day I can be confident but the next a bunch of tears and anxious thoughts. After several failed relationships I thought…. I was sure I found “The one” he was a good GODLY Christian man, I was sure I “Just KNEW’ and then he kicked me to the curb…. I have spent several days going back and forth between faith and connfidence and sadness, rejection, and unworthiness… knowing based on where I have been and the things I have done means I am not worthy of a good and GODLY man… constantly doubting myself …..

  40. Until reading your blog today, I had never thought about the Bible not having a single sentence about Jesus doubting himself. Your comment on Jesus depending solely on God’s approval also gave me pause for reflection. How often are our insecurities due to caring too much about other’s approval, instead of focusing on the only one who matters, God? This was a powerful thought and moment for me! I will truly look at things differently now. I am grateful for your words.

  41. Elaine Segstro says:

    What a “timely” blessing from your devotional, Renee! I am feeling so worn out and discouraged on this journey when I walk by myself. Jesus IS with me to encourage and not to criticize.

  42. Thank you so much, the devotion and blog was just what I needed today. I needed to be reminded that God not only always faithful, but he pursues me, loves me beyond measure, just as I am, this imperfect girl with all my faults and failures. He is all that I need. Blessings.

  43. I can relate to hearing ten good things and one criticism and only hearing the criticism. Often that criticism comes from my own thoughts or feelings about myself. I know I need to work on hearing God’s truth about who I am and who He is creating me to be. At times this process is so overwhelming I fear I’ve lost sight of Him or I struggle to hear Him through the noise of life and my head. But it is in spending moments with Him each morning that I am reminded that this is His plan not mine and He is guiding me and it will all be alright as long as I can refocus my eyes on Him.

  44. Ashley S. says:

    “Jesus was the only perfect Person to walk this earth… yet He was constantly criticized.” I love this!! Even if I was perfect I would still be criticized. It’s difficult not to care what others think but in light of this that just seems silly. Really struggling in my marriage right now…trying to lean into who God says I am.

    • Melissa K. says:

      I felt the same way when I read that line. Truth is, criticism is their problem, not yours. It doesn’t matter much what you do, there will always be some one to criticize.

  45. After 29 years of striving to please God in my Christian life, He got me attention.
    Shortly thereafter, my handful of close friends were gone, all too busy even for email communication. I fought at first, it hurts. They all had careers and went back to work. I am an older mom with young teens and no college Education. BUT, I believe my Father allowed this for the best reason. As I am going through a healing process from a traumatic life prior to Christ, He loves me so much He allowed them to go, so HE can be my one and only. I did not know what that looked like, and so he is showing me. It’s a journey that will take time, but I am now surrendered and welcome it, even when painful. I trust What He is doing in my life, even through the painful, lonely moments. Now I see He sends me to the strangers and acquaintances whenHe deems the time is right. I have to ask every day, what do You want me to do with this day. He always answers.

  46. Soledad says:

    I believe this book would benefit my daughter and I. we both struggle with confidence and realizing that God loves us no matter what we have done.Sometimes I notice it is hard for my daughter to take in the good things people say about her, she is always leaning towards the negativity. I love reading your messages they help me daily. It always seems God knows what I need at that exact moment

  47. These were the exact words I needed to hear this morning. Feeling very alone and listening to all the doubtful, critical thoughts running rampantly through my mind. I so badly needed to be reminded of the One who truly loves me and will never leave me. Thank you!!

    • Melissa K. says:

      It’s crazy how those hurtful thoughts go in our minds and bounce around, always reminding us that we are less than what Christ made us to be. Guard your heart and release those thoughts & do not allow them to consume you. You do have a choice. I wil be praying for you, Debbie.

  48. Wonderful devotion today. Each day as I read P31 devotions I am reminded of the love GOD has for me .
    The words from strong Christian women like yourself are the extra encouragement I need each day.
    Thank you!

  49. There are days . . . . and some of those days can turn into weeks. Oh, how a comment or bad experience can, and does consume my thoughts. Those ugly thoughts can grow into a feeling of despair. I just rehash the scenario over and over in my head. Forgetting the fact that God is right there waiting for me to talk to him. Waiting because he knows exactly what I am going through. He is the one constant in the equation~the one that is always there for me. Wish there was a way I could catch myself sooner. If I would simply learn to lean on Jesus a little more, I might just prevent myself from feeling so bad. Each new day is an opportunity for growth ~ glad I am learning to lean on Jesus a little more :)

  50. A nice reminder that even if we were to reach perfection (which we can’t) people would still complain about something…just like they did with Jesus.

  51. I am always looking for approval and quite honestly not alway do I look up. Thank you for reminding me that Jesus is always there and he approves of me just because I am His.

  52. Brenda Moore says:

    I’m struggling….and need prayer. Not expecting to win anything. I love your blog.

    • Melissa K. says:

      Brenda,
      Praying for you. My favorite preacher once said, “It’s direction not perfection.” Just don’t stop striving in the right direction.

  53. Leigh Ann says:

    Thank you for the encouraging devotion.

  54. The worse critic I’ve ever had is myself! I love the reminder that Jesus never doubted himself.

  55. Cheryl P says:

    I struggle daily with self confidence. I get criticized by my 16 year old son about being too strict, or too nosy, or always trying to control who he hangs out with or who his friends are. I feel as if I am not a good enough Mom. I feel as if I have let God down and that I am not the Godly woman he wants me to be. I sure could use some encouragement to obtain a confident heart and seek to be that Godly woman. I can do all things through Jesus Christ who gives me strength.

  56. Heather P. says:

    To rest my “imperfect self” in the love of the only One who is perfect is something that I struggle with daily. It is something that I have to remind myself constantly. That He loves me – and chooses me, in all of my “imperfect-ness”, and in spite of my “imperfect-ness”, before I ever chose Him!

  57. loraine says:

    Thank you for the reminder of our security in Jesus…we can rest in his love and not be intent on our performance! Grace and peace to you!

  58. Colleen says:

    What a great reminder that no one is perfect, we are all sinners – and we all can be critical at times of ourselves and others. It is then when we start doubting ourselves, our purpose, our confidence. But through it all we have the ONE perfect love to help us realize we will be okay and are never alone. Thanks for the great message of inspiration and hope.

  59. Melissa K. says:

    I have struggled with confidence for a logn time but am making progress. I now worry for a friend that is letting the criticism of others in authority over her to consume her. Someone once told me that one day you will teach what you need to learn. As I am working on my confidence in Christ I am trying to lift up my friend also and learn this together. I will be passing on this blog post to her and sharing the devotional with her if I win. Ladies, please let Christ fill up that craving for approval, not others. Oh, what peace it gives.

  60. Confident………..don’t know if that has ever been a part of who I am.

  61. Renee,

    I am new to Proverbs 31 ministries, and just subscribed yesterday. Your post today was the first one, and I’m glad. It is also the first thing I selected from my inbox this morning, amidst all the junky emails.

    I definitely struggle with identity and self-doubt issues at times. I turned 50 this year, and have had a lot to reflect on, with many family events and milestones that have happened just recently. I have a lot on my plate, and I don’t know how everything will turn out. I’m in the job market as well, and if anything can smack you in the self-doubt area, that’s it. I am concerned/frustrated/scared much of the time, and am trying to be faithful and wait on God’s timing. Sometimes I wonder when my turn will come, and if things haven’t worked out because I’m not a “good person”. The things we let ourselves think, right?

    So…thank you for your encouraging words today. I’ll be back.

    Laurie

  62. Thank you so much for this – I really needed it today. I feel so very unworthy and this made me feel loved.

  63. Yes we can know Jesus love, but to feel it is something I really struggle with. The Proverbs 31 devotions are a true blessing. Thank you for sharing!

  64. Brenda S says:

    The pressure we put on ourselves to do everything and be everything is daunting. We set ourselves up for feelings of failure, not being loved, not being good enough. I am learning……..and it has been a long, slow process….that if God is the only person I please and the only person who loves me just the way I am, that is enough. Everything else is icing on the cupcake. This doesn’t mean that I don’t try to help others or that I don’t care or it doesn’t hurt when someone criticizes me. It means that I try to daily live in the love of Christ. He is my strength, He is my security, He just IS. I am trying to simplify and downsize so that I have less “stuff” to focus on and more time to pursue Him.

  65. Christy Duncan says:

    I struggle daily with loneliness, insecurity, and a plethora of other things. Funny thing is I feel most lonely at home with four little hands who I train each day and in the house of God where I worship every week. The two places I should never be lonely. I am in a constant battle with myself of being a good person, a shining example of God to everyone along with being a good wife, mother, sister, housekeeper, chef, and all the other monotonous tasks I perform each and every day. None of them being done they way I think they should be done. Your devotional today is just what I needed to read. Thank you for it! Can’t wait for the devo!

  66. I am amazed how you speak right to my heart. I have struggled with insecurities all of my llife and honestly thought I was alone in that. Your writings encourage me and point me to the truth in Gods word. Thank you so much for your ministry. The Lord has used you to speak hope into my life. Quotes from you are even speaking louder than my insecurities at times. That is such a sweet blessing!

  67. Tiffany says:

    I am a busy mom with two little ones who works full-time outside the home while my husband is working long hours in residency; your blog is an inspiration to me! It reminds me that God is always with me even on the long and lonely “single-mommy” days. Thank you for your encouraging words!

  68. Gaylene says:

    Jerimiah 29:11 is my favorite scripture. Learning to believe it for my life was a catalyst for changing me. God has taught me who I am in Jesus…the Holy Spirit leads, guides, and teaches me in the ways I should go and how I think. Staying in the Word and learning from other Christian women has helped me so much.
    I thank God that today my confidence is not in myself, or my ability; but through Him I can have the appropriate self love. Loving Jesus, and letting him love me back is how confidence has grown in me.
    Thank You Lord!

  69. Ginnie Montoya says:

    Just to say that it is so true that just one person can really hurt say but also it is so true we can trust that God will always be at our side. Thank you For your words very beautiful devotional. Because as a Pastor’s Wife we hear so much negative stuff and we may feel alone. But God is always on our side.

  70. The part when Renee wrote “Jesus was the only perfect Person to walk this earth… yet He was constantly criticized.” reminded me that if the society criticizes A Perfect God, they will surely criticize me. I cannot walk around on this earth hoping to please everyone to receive the approval of everyone. I really identify with Sam, the woman at the well, in so many ways. I know most women are probably ashamed to admit that we all can relate to Sam in various ways. She had nothing left because she had given away her all to various people and distractions that she thought she was required to give to so that in return, she would receive their love and acceptance. How disappointed are we when we do the same thing? I’m reminded, once again, to give only to God, even when I feel like I have nothing left to give because I have a river that will never run dry. Only when I”m totally empty of “self,” He can fill me up and make me whole again. I’m glad that I’m not perfect but I serve a perfect God.

  71. shari mcniff says:

    Sometimes I find myself wanting to spend time away from my family, if only for an evening to gain control over my sense of self-worth. It never works. I come home seeing the sink over flowing and socks everywhere. I immediately am filled with thoughts that I am not doing my job as a parent raising my kids to take care of themselves. All selfish and all about me…. I have some work to do on me.

  72. Your message today is such an inspiring one. I don’t want my feelings of inadequacy to overpower me. I know the many flaws that I have but I also know that God is perfect and his love is perfect. I know that through the Holy Spirit I can feel his Love and am confident in that.

  73. I struggle everyday with not being confident. I am single again and have lost 175 lbs and still feel imperfect and no self confidence. I’ve been waiting 6 years for God to bring a God fearing Christian man into my life and nothing is happening. One thing I am confident of however, is that the Lord loves me no matter what. I am His child and He only makes beautiful things. I must learn to be content with this life and with the Lord as my Heavenly Husband!

  74. I love this…I am so hard on myself sometimes and need reminders that failure happens and we can’t be perfect.

  75. Amber M. says:

    wow and wow, just love the words in the post today! what a thought….Jesus was the only perfect Person to walk this earth… yet He was constantly criticized….. thank you for this

  76. I have this conversation with myself almost every week. Generally, when I enter a room or when I am involved in a group conversation, it seems the people there look past me or through me and don’t respond to what I add to the conversation. I cannot count the number of times I’ve come home to tell my husband, “well, it happened again. I was invisible today……..” I have to remind myself constantly that Jesus loves me. He sees me. His plan is perfect and he is orchestrating His plan for each of us. I am also encouraged and hopeful when I read a devotion like this one. Thank you, Renee, for another timely reminder. Bless you.

  77. I would love to have less doubt and a more confident heart! Thank you for sharing Words to help with that. God bless you!

  78. Wow, I can’t process this devotion in one day. This is one I will use for the rest of the week just to absorb some of what is saying. I wish I had the confidence I need for myself. I am the “Sam” in this story always looking for acceptance from earthly people instead of seeking it through my Heavenly Father. Thanks for this great devotion today.

  79. Thank you for your message today. I struggle with self doubt and feeling imperfect. I am a people pleaser BIG time and don’t like it. Today’s message was a great reminder for me to please only my heavenly Father.

  80. Boy, can I relate! Thank you for this giveaway…

  81. Stephanie Wilson says:

    This was a much needed message for me today…..one that I probably need everyday. I am really bad about holding on to those negative feelings that come when people intentionally or unintentionally say things that cut to the core of my heart. I am working on letting go of those feelings, forgiving those that have hurt me, and being confident in God’s unconditional love for me. It is a DAILY battle not to let Satan get in the way of that. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!!!

  82. I never felt I needed to be perfect but I’ve always struggled with not feeling like I’m worthy enough and I didn’t measure up to my peers. This has been a childhood issue that moved into my adulthood. This inadequate feeling is a result of being born with a chronic illness that has limited my potential in many ways, but I’ve come to realize thru Christ Jesus all things are possible. I believe this truth so evidently, however I still have my moments when I doubt it. I love the fact you address these issues we deal with in our physical man, but in the spirit nothing is too hard for God and he loves me.

  83. Heather Jump says:

    I so appreciated today’s daily devotional from Proverbs 31. And then I followed the link to your blog and this message was just as timely. I often feel the weight of failure and loneliness. I’ve been longing and tempted to pursue relationships that would be less than God has in store for me, but His reminders, through you and some amazing friends, have been timely and much appreciated.

  84. Caroline Livingston says:

    Inside I struggle with feeling like a “dry & weary land where there is no water.” But then I read words like your devotional today & that draws me back to God’s words…
    Isaiah 17-18,20
    “The poor and needy search for water,
    but there is none;
    their tongues are parched with thirst.
    But I the Lord will answer them;
    I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them.
    I will make rivers flow on barren heights,
    and springs within the valleys.
    I will turn the desert into pools of water,
    and the parched ground into springs.
    So that people may see and know,
    may consider and understand,
    that the hand of the Lord has done this.”
    And then my anxious heart calms amid the whirlwind around me, and I can rest in the way my Abba sees me. Thank you Renee for letting The Lord use you this morning.

  85. I really needed this! Thank You, Lord for reminding me that all I need to do is rely on You, for You alone are perfect.

    Reading this made me realize that I shouldn’t let others’ criticism dwell in my mind and heart but instead, ask God for wisdom on how to deal with it.

  86. Meredith Brooks says:

    I have struggled with perfection all of my life!! I know that I am not perfect by any means, but coping with it is a difficulty. I was so young when I had my first child. I was 19. I didn’t know anything about anything, much less about being a mother. My firstborn is now 19, has graduated from high school with honors, and is attending college on scholarships. I have 3 other children, as well. You would think that at this point I would be more confident in my ability to mother children, but it is still a constant struggle for me. Thank you for sharing this message for people like me. It encourages me and gives me hope.

  87. I love reading your devotionals,they always speak to what I am thinking at the time. You have a way with words that is a real gift. I am in need of some confidence right now and I am sure your book is what I need.

  88. Thank you so much for your words today, how true.. no matter how many positive things you hear the ones that really seem to stick and “eat away” at us are the negative or cruel items. Thank you for your words of wisdom and reminder that God love us despite our imperfections

  89. Just stumbled upon your blog and am loving it! Can’t wait to start this devotion. It’s exactly what I need right now!

  90. Angela S says:

    I needed this now more than ever. It is axing to know what God puts on your heart that invariably is meant for so many other people. Thank you!

  91. Heather P says:

    Thank you for your post. Most days I feel like I will never overcome being my own worst enemy and stop holding myself back. I feel like I “know” I’ll fail at something, so I self sabotage and don’t begin things so that I can’t fail. But then I find myself unhappy and lonely. I’m currently sitting outside on a day off trying to connect with God, trying to contemplate what He wants me to do with my life. I work for a Christian company, but leadership turmoil has made me question everything, including what I’m good at and whether I want to continue on this career path, no matter who I work for. The world is crowding out God’s calm and reassuring voice. Thank you for reminding me of God’s truth today as I search and pray for guidance, hoping that I will have the courage to pursue the life He has for me in Christ.

  92. i am not perfect but I would love to have this book to have a closer walk with Jesus and to get to know him a whole lot better. trying to get all the negative thoughts out of me& from around me.
    be blessed

  93. I couldn’t possibly put into words right now what this devotion meant to me. Thank you.

  94. I have always been my own worst critic – and often even when others commend or encourage me, I am willing to let myself think they are just being nice”. As much as that is hard on me, my biggest thought is that it will come out to my children and husband and that they will feel I am criticizing them more than I am encouraging and building them up. I don’t want challenges to be the best we can be in God’s sight to be critical words to those I thik I may be encouraging. I would love to spend the summer working on this critical attitude – of myself and even of others – with the confident heart devotional.

  95. To some this may sound, well, not so nice and maybe I could have opted to use another word other than “enjoy”. It was not too long ago my husband and I were riding in the car and I said to him, “I enjoy seeing other peoples mistakes.” Not much response on his end I proceeded to share my thoughts. I told him “The reason is it makes me feel better about myself, the freedom in knowing, “Hey, its ok to make mistakes…we all do.” In the end no one is better than anyone else. Sure some may have all the degrees, the well paying job, nice cars and beautiful homes but it doesn’t mean they’re without making mistakes sometimes. There are days I can still feel of know value, especially when in search for a job and not much success but I tell myself, “I’m ok and that God loves me.”

  96. Robin Russell says:

    I am going through a deep struggle right now, as my husband of 20 years is telling me ,from Afghanistan that he is not happy and does not believe that we can work through this time. I doubt the validity of my existence every day, thinking that I am unworthy of love and affection. I wonderif, at my age, I will be able to support and take care of my 14 year old. Today’s message spoke to me on so many different levels. I am so glad that it was put into my path. As I head out on my daily 5 mile walk, I will use that time to speak to Him and listen to his plans for me. Thank you again.

  97. Charlotte Henry says:

    Just today, I have found your website through Proverbs31 Ministries and believe through my faith in God that I was led here. I am a single, professional, mom of a wonderful and beautiful teenage daughter. My life has been full of adversity, but my faith, hope, and trust in God have always seen me through both the best and most difficult hours of my life. Recently, God has renewed my spirit, and is leading me to spend more time in prayer, bible study, and fellowship with my church. Like many other women, I too suffer from a low self-esteem, lack of confidence, feelings of failure as a mom, and lack of understanding of my purpose in life. I pray for God’s will in my life and through Christian friends and mentors, family, website and publications such as yours, I am being shown the way, for which I am very grateful and thankful to God. My life’s verse is Proverbs 3: 5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, never rely on what you think you know, Remember the Lord in everything you do, and he will show you the right way”. With faith, I am guided, with hope, I am stronger, and with love, I will endure. So happy to be here!

  98. Peg J. Ribble says:

    WOW!! This is so hitting home today! I have heard about this book but have never read it. Sounds like it really needs to be on my list of “to do” things this summer. Thanks for sharing!!

  99. Aimee Shahan says:

    Oh my goodness! This is so where I’m at and have been for a while. Trying to please everyone and not doing it for the right reasons, forgetting the One who loves unlike any other and forgetting who I am in Him. Your words are so encouraging and just what I need to hear right now! Thank you for being open and obedient to the Lord’s calling!

  100. I struggle with trying to be perfect – be the perfect wife, mother, daughter, employee. I am failing – the perfect wife – not so much – I have to work and when I get home – I am tired – tired of dealing with and frustrated with people I come into contact with, when I walk through the doors at home, I have to tend to my father who is suffering from Alzehimers and Parkinsons. I deal with the guilt of not being able to be home all day to take care of him – I run home at lunch to check on him. So after all that, I am too tired to make dinner for my husband or clean the bathroom. Both my father and I are dealing with the loss of my mother – she passed 6 months ago. I wrestle with my emotions – I wanted to do more with my mom but now it is too late. I am trying to take care of myself – need to lose some weight – so even my “the world’s” standards – I am far from perfection. I just feel that I have left everyone down – I am stretched too thin and I pray everyday for God’s strength.

  101. Shavette says:

    Every since I was little I always had issue with rejection and being alone. Since I wasn’t raised by my parents I felt if your they didn’t want you nobody else will. So as I go through life I always doubt everything I do and say, I still walk around with the shame of feeling that I will never being worthy of the love that God has for me or be a God woman to live out my purpose. I alwasy look at the negative and think that i’m only surpose to have the bad things in life never the good.

  102. Renee, I wanted to take a moment to say thank you for bringing this message forward today. I am a woman trying very hard to be what God wants me to be. I have been dealing with a lot of misgivings about myself and my confidence has reached an all time low recently. I needed this reminder that I am not alone and that it is ok that I am not perfect.

  103. I needed to hear this today. I am not where I want to be and it seems like my ideals are getting further and further away from me. I’ve been thinking all kinds of negative thoughts but now I will stop and remember this blog and what God’s word says. Thank you so much for sharing!

    Dee

  104. I need to hear this every day! I don’t usually think of myself as lacking self confidence, yet when it comes to my spiritual self confidence, I am very weak and timid. Thank goodness God loves me right where I am today.

  105. Melissa Romero says:

    Never did I realize until being a stay at home mom, how much we criticize our selves and strive for perfection. Not realizing we are never going to reach perfection. I’m so thankful for Gods perfect love and the strength and peace he provides through the holy spirit. Stay focused on the Lord!

  106. I can’t tell you how much I love A Confident Heart. It is a perfect book for everyone. I love how you incorporate the scriptures within your messages. God bless you!!

  107. Renee, your writing is so fresh and inspiring. Like a salve to my heart. This morning after a call to a friend for coffee (ugh, I woke her up) I felt not good enough, cool enough, independent enough, enough…enough. Thank you for this encouragement today that I am a child of God and in Him, I am enough. I pray I can live according to what is important to Him instead of trying to keep up with my own people-pleasing tendencies and the exhausting measures I take to try to present the best, most “perfect” version of me all.the.time. Blessings to you!

  108. Thank you for your devotions, they really speak to my heart. I keep “wishing” I could be bold and confident, I am working on this daily and some days are better than others. I know God strengthens me and He is a reminder of unconditional love. I would love to have this package to share with my daughter, as a reminder of “A Confident Heart”.

  109. Molly Prichard says:

    Thank you Renee for this blog post, I was having a rough day allowing the devil steal my joy due to my past actions, hurts or rejections. Your summary about Jesus looking only to God the father for approval was a great reminder of what I need to do.

  110. Thank you so much Renee for letting the Lord use you to help encourage us with the words He’s given you to speak into our lives exactly when we need them. I do & have been feeling like such a failure these days even though I know the Lord has my back and that I’m doing what I know He’s wanting me to do at the time. Or should I say I know I’m on the path He’s put me on. I’m feeling like such a failure with regards to my finances and in raising my kids. I’ve done a pretty good job considering I’ve had to do so on my own. Yet I’m lost in knowing how to help guide my oldest son into the next step of becoming an adult and finding a job & learning to helping to provide for himself with the Lords guidance. I would enjoy to have this package for one I am in a point I’m really not able to afford it even though I know the Lord has guided me to seeing this post and get this devotional. I feel He is just guiding me to enter to try it this way 1st and well if nothing comes of it then He will show me how to go about purchasing it.. Anyway, I pray that you consider me when deciding on who will get this beautiful package. God Bless & thank you again for letting the Lord use you.

  111. Diane Iverson says:

    This devotional sounds awesome! There has been a lot of hurt in our family, so it is hard to know how to even act. Thank you for all you do!

  112. Elizabeth says:

    Thanks for the devotional!

  113. Susie Yarnell says:

    I have read your book, Renee and cannot t\ell you how much it helped me. I find myself going back to it again and again when I fill with self-doubt. I know I will never be perfect…no one is…but I can learn to love myself and be confident in who I am. Thank you for all you do!

  114. Brigette says:

    Thank you cannot begin to say how grateful that I am to have come across this devotional today. Just when I felt like giving up, this came though my email. Thank you

  115. Adriana U says:

    WOW Renee.
    Your sharing “Jesus was the only perfect Person to walk this earth… yet He was constantly criticized. But, guess what? Nowhere is it recorded in scriptures that Jesus ever doubted Himself. No matter what, He stayed secure in His purpose and confident in His calling. What His Father said {about Him} was all that mattered {to Him}.” REALLY SPOKE TO MY HEART! I’m going to write that in my journal.

  116. Elizabeth Madden says:

    Thank you, Renee, this is just what I needed to hear this morning. My husband has been diagnosed with inoperable cancer and I feel so inadequate as a wife and care giver. I keep trying to make sure everything is perfect so there is no stress for him. Unfortunately, I am failing miserably. I know that I am not perfect and never can be. However, hearing those words your friend told you made me realize that even more. I can’t do it alone, but I can do it with God and all the people he puts in my life to help me. Again, thank you. My heavy heart is much lighter now. Bless you always!

  117. Thanks so much for this today. I am currently at a point in my life where I feel as if I can’t catch a break….and through all of it have never felt more alone. I needed this reminder that He is there for me even when no one else is….those times when I feel so alone, afraid, and a constant failure and disappointment to others. I appreciate this so much.

  118. Sherryl Frank says:

    Thank you – much needed today and most days. I think we as women have so many roles and its hard to get everything done the way we THINK it needs to be that the doubts set in so easily. And then there is the whole thing with trying to please everyone.

    Yes, Jesus is our soft pillow land on. Feel so blessed to have that.

    Thanks!

  119. I have felt like something must be wrong with me for quite awhile now because of how my life seems to have fallen apart in so many areas. Thank you for reminding me that it’s ok that to have something wrong with me. It doesn’t matter because my God who is perfect loves me just as I am.

  120. Thank you Renee and also the P31 writers. Your encouraging words really make a difference in so many lives.

  121. Alyese Black says:

    I wholeheartedly believe that God finds you where you are. I don’t always click on the links on FB of Proverbs 31, but today I did. That was my well where Jesus was waiting for me, as I sat mired in self-doubt and shaken by the ripple of unkind words that led to thoughts challenging the very core of my beliefs and confidence in myself. I thought I was a good mother, wife, friend and couldn’t think beyond the now swarming thoughts that none of that could possibly be true. How can I fix it, what medicine should I take, will my children remember my tears when they are older? I felt paralyzed as I sat in the couch, praying that a quiet moment alone would still my mind. And there, in the reflective words of the post, was Jesus, patiently waiting for me with the reminder that he purposely sought out this moment to hold me through this darkness, to comfort my mind and carry the burden for a while. It seems that confidence is always restored when we realize that it was only ever momentarily misplaced and never truly lost…because we can never lose God even when we try to hide.

    • Oh Alyese. I’ve been there. Sitting in the same place, in my own living room questioning everything I was and did. Im praying for you tonight sweet friend. ~Renee

  122. Sherry Fraunfelter says:

    Just when I think I have recovered from people pleasing, I find myself doing it again. It is just part of who I am and since God made me this way, I must be in His will. Thank you for what all your devotions mean to me.

    • Yes, the disease to please is a hard one to overcome but I’ve found that in the security of God’s (when I own them like they are mine no matter what) I’ve found we can have a deep soul assurance most of us never thought possible. God made us sensitive to others needs but He doesn’t want us to get lost in them or defined by them. Praying for you and each of you sharing the same struggle. We can walk in these truths together!!

  123. Courtney J says:

    I needed to hear this today! I constantly allow my failures to shake my confidence. This often makes me feel inadequate and worthless. Thank you for reminding me that God’s love is perfect so I don’t have to be. :)

    • It’s so easy to do but our failures aren’t fatal and they don’t have to have the final say. Jesus deserves to have more say than our performance. He loves us and wants us to learn how to love ourselves the way He does, with lots of grace and patience!

  124. Jamie Dunleavy says:

    This is so true! We all strive to be perfect yet we never will. We can’t because Jesus is the only perfect one. Each day, all we can do is our best and be thankful for our blessings.

  125. Wanda Perez says:

    Blessed to know that “I AM AN IMPERFECT WOMAN, LOVED BY PERFECT GOD!

  126. Like many women, I struggle with trying to be perfect and pleasing others. I thank God for devotionals from Proverbs 31 Ministries and lessons from my pastor and church, as well as good friends who have spoken into my life. Together, these components have helped me to see that my value lies in Christ, not others.

  127. Maxcine Varnadore says:

    Such a powerful word of encouragement. Being surrounded in a world quick to criticize and correct, it is so refreshing to hear words that uplift and magnify the spirit and soul. Echoing in my heart are your words “Jesus was the only perfect person to walk this earth…yet he was constantly criticized” I know the pains of constant criticism, it has been my companion since birth. I didn’t realize the negative impact it had in my life until recently, when a friend asked me why I always put myself down because I am a wonderful person and I need to see and say that about myself. As I begin to listen to my own words, I recognized the parroting affect those critical words had imprinted on my heart. I uttered…God help me with this…and like Sam, at the unsuspecting perfect moment in time, God visited me through you. Only this time, He gave me the water from the well. Focused on the word, criticism, I leave with one thought, is there such a thing as “constructive criticism” or is that the oxy of all morons? Thanks for your kind words, they are truly an extension of God’s love.

    • Praising Him for providing the refreshment that you desire and need. May He be honored and glorified through His Word and His message.

      Blessings,

      Donna B
      Renee Swope’s Ministry Team

  128. Michelle h says:

    thanks for the encouraging words today!

  129. Thank you for sharing this. It is s something that happened to me this morning. It made me question myself, my faith and my imperfections. I know in my heart what God’s Word says, yet I focused on that one small comment that sent my thoughts racing. I went for a walk and ask God to show me and help me. When I came home, I received your email. I love how God works when we ask. Thanks!

  130. Georgia says:

    I’m hardest on myself! I take others thoughts and words about me to heart. I need to focus on what God says about and concentrate on those truths. Thanks for this wonderful devotion.

  131. Christina says:

    I was greatly blessed to read your devotional this morning (the one about the Samaritan woman at the well and how Jesus still pursues us). It was like water to my soul after a long desert stretch for my faith through unemployment, family struggles, and other issues that have weighed me down. I needed to read that. Thank you for blessing me today.

  132. Wow – this really spoke to my heart today. I struggle with being the best I can be, and feel like I fall short. What a great and timely reminder that God is there and He loves me even though I’m not perfect. I’ll never be perfect until I reach His perfect Heaven. Thank you for sharing this message today!

  133. Rebecca Shiplett says:

    Oh my!!! I love it when our Father gives us exactly what we need even when we don’t know we need it. I was skipping through emails and I saw yours. My initial thought was, I’ll read that one later. But something (Someone!) made me open and read it. I needed your words and His confirmation more than I knew. I’ve been beating myself up again for not getting to everything on my list which brings the self-doubts flooding in that I’m not worthy as a friend, wife, mother, teacher, ….. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your heart in obedience to Him. He knows the goofy person that I am, I’ll let the world back in and need to be hit between the eyes with His goodness and grace.

  134. karen miller says:

    Thank you for letting me know I’m not the only one like this!

  135. I’m doing a study on idols–anything that I want more than I want God. Perfectionism and validation are two out of many areas I struggle with. I know it takes a concentrated effort to take my thoughts captive to what God says and thwart off the enemy’s lies.

    I want to experience His peace and joy instead of living in a state of fear, anxiety, doubt and weariness. God is bigger than all my concerns and when I don’t run to Him to draw my strength. I’m telling Him He’s not sufficient enough and I’m giving my power to satan. I don’t want satan to have this victory.

    Blessings for your ministry to help women live a victorious thought life which places God on His rightful throne instead of myself or other people or things.

  136. Patricia Sanford says:

    “Jesus was the only perfect Person to walk this earth… yet He was constantly criticized.”

    I needed that.

    I’ve been receiving some criticism from non-believing family members lately that has just stung my heart and this was the balm I needed.

    Thank you, Renee!

  137. Your book “A Confident Heart” is an amazing book. Words were spoken to me yesterday that in the past would have put me in a very bad, self doubting place. Your post today and daily devotion were perfect timing for me. Thanks!

  138. Jeanine says:

    This was a very much needed reminder today…keeping my eyes on Him! Thanks for sharing such a powerful message.

  139. Susan G says:

    Thanks for the opportunity to give away another one of your awesome books. Our women’s small group went through your book in our study and it is so filled with truths of God’s Word to break the ‘chains’ and bring freedom to women.
    I already have a couple of women in mind to give it to – I know the Lord will tell me which one. ;)
    Blessings on you and your family Renee.

  140. Oh Renee, how I needed to read this today. Coincidence that I ran upon this blog post today…I don’t think so. God is so good…he gives us what we need when we need it, and I needed this. Would love to win your book. Thanks for the chance to try.

  141. I want to share an unusual testimony. If I may. I want to thank you for this post. God works in amazing ways and I feel so blessed. I turned my back in Christianity long ago and am not what I call a Christian but a believer in the principles of Jesus. Somehow your message made it to my email and to my heart today and I thank you. I look forward to reading your Confident Heart Devotional when it comes out and pray it continues to lead me back to Jesus. Today I let go of the urge to be perfect and trust that in God’s eyes I am enough. Thank you.

    • Ananda,

      Praying for you! Praying for God to WOO you back to Himself. Always remember His promise that His love never fails and He will never forsake you NO MATTER WHAT.

      Prayers and blessings,

      Donna B
      Renee Swope’s Ministry Team

  142. Amy Taylor says:

    Thank you for the reminder that what the Father says about me is all that should matter to me. I long and pray to be a woman who fully knows who she is in Christ. I need Him to remind me every day and I am thankful that He never grows tired of doing that!

  143. Dawnielel says:

    Thanks for this. I really needed at this time in my life.

  144. nancys1128 says:

    While I’ve moved beyond a lot of the self-doubt and taking things to heart, words and actions (or lack thereof) do still sometimes sting. Thanks for offering this giveaway. I’m in search of a new devotional book, and this will be perfect to keep me from sliding back to my self-doubting ways.

  145. Judy L. says:

    I really love your devotion. I struggle deeply with insecurities. Too often I let fer and doubt creep in and soon I feel so alone. I could be in a room full of people and yet feel like I’m by myself dwelling in my insecurities. I need to be reminded that He is always with me and that He loves me unconditionally no matter what I do. I just need to fully believe this and trust that He will carry me through my tribulations.

  146. Confidence is such a daily struggle in all areas of my life. I want to be confident in who God wants me to be.

  147. Jeanette Costello says:

    While I can readily admit that I am far from perfect there is no denying that His timing is! These beautiful words of wisdom, encouragement, and truth could not have come at a more perfect time for me…definitely a God-incidence!

  148. So very thankful we serve the God of 2nd chances!

  149. Carol K says:

    Renee,

    Lovely message just when I needed it! This morning I forgot, again, that I am not alone. It is always a pleasure to open my email and find your devotions. So often they speak directly to my heart. :)

  150. Ellen Jones says:

    I come from a Christian family. I was raised in a southern Baptist home and have known the Lord since I was a young child. I have never doubted him or thought he has given up on me. I have 4 sisters and one brother. I’ve never lost the Lord, but I do feel like I am such a disappointment to Him and my family. My mother is a very godly woman and all my sisters and my brother are such good Christian followers and leaders. I have no doubts in the Lord, but I have lots of doubts about myself. I feel very insignificant in my family and in my faith. I want to find a way to feel better about myself and my Christian life.

  151. Hi Renee!

    I read your book A Confident Heart a couple years ago and participated in the on-line study… It spoke so much to my heart and encouraged me to let God’s love and Words of truth flood my mind instead of listening to my own fears, worries, doubts and insecurites. Thank you for encouraging my heart through your book and devotions, and the reminder that Jesus is there with us through our everyday life. He is our blessed assurance!!

  152. Colleen Long says:

    You sound just like me! I read your blog and I can relate to
    everything you say! I am going to have to get your book sometime
    down the road as I am reading a book now and have another after
    that. Thank you for reminding me that I don’t have to be perfect and
    that it is okay to like myself. Thank you so much!

  153. Just reading this blog brings tears to my eyes and a lump in my throat. I feel so unworthy and battle negative thoughts about myself constantly. Thank you for the encouragement and reminder that I am a child of the one true King! He is perfect so that I don’t have to be!

  154. margaret eubanks says:

    I dont have your book. I am not able to buy it. We dont have the money but I found a link to your blog on Facebook and I really like it.

  155. Jessica F says:

    I struggle so much with self doubt that your devotional would be a blessing for me. Thank you!

  156. Miss Mary T says:

    Renee, your OBS A CONFIDENT HEART was a life changer for me, so much so that I signed up for the P31 study as well! I would love to win the devotional! I have the book on my Kindle but there is a young woman that I have been praying for and helping…trying to gently open her heart to Jesus a little at a time by sharing and showing my faith and God’s blessings! It is my hope and confident expectation that she will see Him in her life…the past and the present and the future! “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give hope and a future…” Thanks and God bless!

  157. Michelle says:

    I have read your book and love it!
    I need to read it again.

    I have messed up relationships because I struggle with perfectionism.
    Yes, I am just beginning to realize this.
    So I would love some more guidance in this area.

    Thank you for your book & the giveaway.

    God Bless

  158. Jennifer says:

    I was so struck by by those words……”He is pursuing you with His gift of perfect love — love that is patient and kind, love that keeps no record of your wrongs, love that won’t give up on you!”…….It reminded me of a post from Ann Voskamp a few months back about God’s goodness and mercy pursuing us all the days of our lives. In Voskamp’s post she was referring to Psalm 23:6 – specifically the work ‘pursue.’ She had found the Hebrew of that word which is ‘radaph’ and it means to pursue, run after, chase. When I read her post I was struck by that image…..God pursuing me with goodness and mercy……She wrote, “…..the goodness and mercy of God isn’t just following after me placidly. The goodness and mercy of God pursues after me passionately. It’s what I keep thinking, picking up lost legos, errant books — like how my mama used to dash off the front porch and run down the lane after me, waving about whatever book I forgot for school — and who else is behind a forgetful, rat-race world but the chasing God? God is so bent on blessing, He chases. God’s not out to get you — He’s out to give to you.And God’s blessings don’t pursue temporarily — but relentlessly. It’s right there in His Word: His goodness and mercy pursue me not just some days — but all the days of my life. When I’m in a wilderness, His mercy and goodness run after me. When I’m hurting, His grace hunts for me. When I’m plagued by problems, His goodness pursues me. No matter where I go, He has his two blessing men right there in hot pursuit: goodness and mercy, and no shadow of death can overshadow the goodness and mercy that shadows the child of God.”
    When I read the post today from Renee, I was immediately reminded of this and oh how I needed the reminder. The Lord knows me so intimately that He is revealing a Truth to me today that needs to be engraved in my heart…..He pursues me…..Wow…..all I can say is wow……

    • Jennifer,

      Thanks for sharing! Ann is one of Renee’s favorite authors and a friend of Renee’s. So glad that Ann’s and Renee’s words spoke to you!

      Blessings and prayers,

      Donna B
      Renee Swope’s Email Ministry Team

  159. TO GOD BE THE GLORY! If I act in accordance with God’s will, then God is glorified and the opinions of others don’t matter. Every action needs to be done as if it is an offering to God.

  160. It always amazes me how God gives us just what we need at the right time. I needed to hear your message today. Bless you.

  161. Nancy Avitia says:

    I am constantly seeking confidence as I struggle so much with self doubt. Seeking Him always gives me freedom and joy and helps me understand that I’m very loved and accepted by Him!

  162. Renee, thank you for this reminder. So grateful the Lord loves me and wants to continue on a daily basis to change my heart. Love this that I can share with my daughter about perfect. I have your devotional book through kindle and enjoy reading it. I want to share this book with my sister-in-laws, either as birthday gifts or Christmas gifts. I am one to have the book on hand, so thank you for a chance to win this.
    Blessings

  163. Thank you, Renee. Your posts always speak to my heart. This past year I’ve been recovering from emotional hurts & habits & it’s posts like this that keep me going. Thanks again☺️

  164. Renee, how true your words are and such an encouraging reminder we can hold on to!
    I have a few friends who need to hold on to these words! Thanks for allowing an opportunity to win your book. Would love to share with those needing words of encouragement.
    Blessings to you.

  165. Rebecca Hill says:

    Your words ring true in my head….now just to get my heart to see it. Doubting my abilities as a Mom and Wife have left me distant and disappointed more than I care to admit.

  166. I have tried to be perfect my entire life! Thank you so very much for this beautiful message! Being told that I am loved in spite of not being perfect is awesome, Just reading that I am not nor ever will be a perfect wife, mom and nana is so freeing!

  167. Wendy Fie says:

    What you spoke about today really spoke to me. God doesn’t say we need to be perfect. We just need to trust Him, believe in faith that His promises are true and love others with the same love he loves us. Hallelujah!

  168. Even when I want to give up on me because of circumstances, etc., the Lord does not! He pursues, runs after, and woos me – he will not let go because He loves me and sees me for who I am – His daughter. We do not have to be perfect for God to accept us and love us. He sees us and loves us through His Son, Jesus. Oh what Love! Oh the Grace!

  169. Arnesia says:

    Thank you for this post today. Even though I know God is with me sometimes we need to be reminded. I’ve really been feeling down, unappreciated, lonely in this walk, and depressed. I would really like to win this book. I could just really use some more encouragement.

  170. Thank you for your recent post, “You’ll Never e Perfect”. Your words of your heart being wounded spoke right to my spirit. I was fired, unjustly, yesterday. I am an outgoing person and really enjoyed my fellow employees and the members that belonged to the gym I worked at. I say I was unjustly let go because the owners husband had spewed out lie after lie about my personality and character. The one manager that was present at the meeting is witness to this as she knows me at work and out of work. But because the owners husband wanted me gone, I was let go. I know what he was yelling was not true, but his words caused me to question if I was who I thought I was? I started thinking about what kind of lies will he be telling my fellow employees and members as to why I was fired. I know, as some others will. I was fired because months earlier the same thing happened to another employee and I spoke up that he was wrong. I guess the why doesn’t matter at this point. Even though I know God will bring good out of it, my heart still aches, not only from being wronged but for the feeling of loss that I am experiencing as I considered everyone as my work family. And that is what we were, a family, I am trying to stay focused on Jesus and how much more angst he must have felt when EVERYONE betrayed him and no one came to support him. How those thoughts made my heart ache even more.. While focusing on Christ I am able to be thankful, I catch myself going from thought to thought, ‘thinking of things I wish I’d said to them”. But in all honestly thanking God for keeping a guard at my mouth. My heart still aches but the time between right focus and wrong focus is widening.
    Praising God and looking forward to the plans he has for me, one thought at a time.
    Thanks for listening, dotty

    • I have a feeling God wants you in a better place. Praying He will open a new door and you’ll see His protection in what feels like rejection. Praying that others will see the truth and that truth might set them free, too!

  171. Melissa says:

    I have never needed to hear these words more than I did today. In the last year my husband was diagnosed with cancer, had surgery, went through radiation and went back to work. We have 4 kids and 1 was born w/ a rare birth defect, she had surgery soon after my husband was recovering. Our 10 year old son has Asperger’s and our 2 other kids have to sit back and watch all this go on. My heart breaks b/c I can’t make anything better. I’m dealing w/ depression and I know God is in control- but these circumstances make me feel useless and numb. Reading all this, being remided that God is pursuing me, he doesn’t want me to walk through this alone. What an amazing feeling! To feel like He sees me, when it’s like no one else does is something I had never considered!

    • Melissa,

      We have to love God’s timing! Praising Him for allowing Renee’s teaching to speak to you when you need it most. May He be glorified in and through you as you minister to your family.

      Prayers,

      Donna B
      Renee Swope’s Ministry Team

  172. Tammy T says:

    Wow! It’s amazing how the Proverbs 31 staff know just what to say in their devotionals. quite a bit has happened over the weekend and a friend is in serious trouble – because she is incommunicado, I can’t reach out to her – and that really hurts because my last words to her were rather harsh. I believe that God knows where my heart is – but speaking from hurt is never right. I continue to pray that she will return to those who love her.

  173. Karin H. says:

    I am a wife, a mom (x3), a daughter, and a sister. This really spoke to me today.

  174. Marcy P says:

    I am a 100% people pleaser with no confidence in myself. It’s something I have struggled with since even elementary school. I am trying to get out of it with God’s help but it is a moment by moment struggle some days. Sometimes I wonder what God is doing and then I am reminded that we are to trust him and lean not on our own understanding.

  175. Julie S. says:

    This really speaks to me. Thank God for your blogs and contribution that so many can relate to. Thank you for sharing your gifts and talents.

  176. Vicki R says:

    I ditto Marcy P’s comments!! I feel the exact same way. I am constantly reading books like Renee’s and the women of Proverbs 31 ministries & with their words of wisdom & biblical truth I am learning to also lean not on my own understanding. Thank you ladies!

  177. Kelly Rush says:

    I’m looking forward to reading your book, Renee. Confidence is something I struggle with.

  178. Charletta says:

    WOW!!! I am so thankful for this right now. I have been doubting myself because of things said or not said to me. I appreciate your truth.

  179. When I was a child if I brought a school paper home with a 97 score, my mother would ask what happened to the other 3 points. So I always tried to be perfect. In an abusive first marriage, I constantly told myself if I was just thin enough, or pretty enough, or whatever I didn’t feel like I was at that time, he would love me and quit hitting me. Even though I am now loved and adored by my second husband, I keep trying to be “perfect” although I’m the only one demanding that of myself. I’m trying very hard to come to peace with acceptance of God’s love as the gift that it is and reconcile my desire to be perfect for Him with the knowledge that He created me the way I am and loves me for it. As I approach 60, I pray that I’ll get past the intellectual acceptance of this and get to the emotional acceptance! Thank you for your words as I seek this goal.

    • Patti,

      Your story reminds of Chapter 2 of A Confident Heart by Renee. The title of the chapter is “Because God’s Love is Perfect, I Don’t Have to Be.” So perfect for you. So much so that I’m going to pray Renee’s prayer at the end of the chapter for you.

      When Patti feels insecure, insignificant, or unloved, remind Patti of Your perfect love that has the power to cast out her fear. Thank you for Your love that is patient, is kind, and keeps no record of wrongs. Teach Patti to trust in the fact that because Your love is perfect, she doesn’t have to be. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

      Donna B
      Renee Swope’s Ministry Team

  180. This devotional was such a good reminder. As a pastors wife, my husband gets those emails sometimes and if we are not careful it will shake us up and cause some mind wars of who we are and our purpose. Thanks

    • Amen. And the enemy loves to get us all distracted and discouraged so we lose our focus from what God wants to do in us and through us. Thanks for the reminder Missy!

  181. I want to be the best Godly woman I can be in God’s eyes. I want to serve Him in whatever capacity He puts me in. I have a heart for teenagers and for the women of the church. I serve right now in both ministries. I am at a place now where I think it might be time to step down from leading the women. It is so hard to let go. Most of all I do not want to be in His way. I am seeking after a closer walk with Him. I so desire that. I know I am not perfect but I desire to be an encourager to other women. I want to be used of God. Please pray for me.

  182. Bethany Flaming says:

    Thank you for such an encouraging word today. This is a good reminder that no matter how hard we try we will never be perfect. Thanks for this great reminder it is just what I needed.

  183. It’s such a relief to know we can stop trying so hard, huh? Let’s give God our best and trust Him to fill the gaps for us!

  184. I am in a constant state of not feeling adequate enough or not good enough! I always second guess my parenting skills and hoping I am providing my husbands needs too! Life is hard. I am still trying to hold to the faith that God loves me even with my insecurities. I see crafty moms and feel that I fall short because I’m not crafty. I see wives that cook breakfast and dinner by scratch and I feel like I fall short as a wife. I see women at church doing all kinds of things and I don’t do as much as they do and then I feel like I fall short of gods expectations. I’m steadily doing bible studies, joining small groups, and praying throughout the day. I’m starting to get it, but I still feel that I lack a lot.

  185. You don’t have to do all that Tiffany. You just be you!! All that crafty homemade stuff doesnt make anyone better or more Godly. It’s what is in your heart, your desire and willingness to love sincerely, that matter to Jesus. I hardly ever cook breakfast from scratch, but Im great at toasting a bagel and putting butter on it for my boys :)! And forget anything crafty. All I do is get stuck together with that hot goo they call glue!

    Just seek Jesus in a relationship and ask Him to show you how to love like He does. I bet He’d do less and be more :)

  186. Juanita Head says:

    Thank you so very much. You wrote this for me. I had over come a lot of my self doubt however the past couple years have been hard. A major incident happened that shook all I knew and made me believe I am a failure, no good……I struggle daily to remember who I once was and I needed the reminder that God meets me where I am. He doesn’t want me to be perfect because of Him I am good enough!! God bless you!!

  187. How timely! School may be over but the busyness of summer, with visits and camps and visitors coming and going- I feel overwhelmed and those nagging doubts about my mothering skills start to creep into my consciousness. Jesus is pursuing me, little ol’ me. Let me slow.down and take the time to receive Him. Amen!

  188. Donna Sherman says:

    Being perfect is something I’ve been struggling with for over 10 years. When I make a bad choice, I beat myself up about it. Needing to be perfect is causing me a lot of emotional and spiritual pain. I believe this is something I need to let go of and give it to God. In the meantime, I just keep pressing on, reading the word, and praying. Please keep me in your prayers!

    God Bless!

  189. Courtney says:

    ” Ten people could say something nice to me or about me, but what I will remember most is that one person’s criticism. How about you?”
    This sentence resonated soo much in my heart because I am my own worst criticizer. And it is the drive to be perfect for others that wraps me in knots. Perfection and people pleasing is a recipe for discouragement and constant failure along with a puffed up view of self that leaves me critical and judgemental of those around me. The more I’m surrounded by Gods love the more I want to give it to those around me. And His love is perfect…the kind that is selfless and heart filling. A heart full of Gods love makes us grateful and humble and we see ourselves for who we are–imperfect–but made perfect by His love which enables us to pour it out on others rather than pour out criticism. I thank the Lord for His love and pray for more and more to love others. This blog post was such a great reminder to me to fill up on His love instead of criticism.

  190. Debi Schuhow says:

    I help depressed women and your book is like a healing balm to cure those negative thoughts they have.

  191. Your message brought tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat. But you are right….who wants to be perfect if it means being alone! Thank you for the encouragement and I loved the reminder of what God says…
    Because My love for
    you is perfect, you
    don’t have to be.
    Phil 1:6

  192. Rachel Anna says:

    I’m definitely a perfectionist and I am starting to see how this has really held me back all my life. If I can’t do something perfectly (and no one can), then I don’t even want to try. Therefore, I never try. I really want to try anyway, even though I am bound to fail. 36 years of this…it’s time to change.

  193. Living the truth of today’s posting has reolutionized my life and way of thinking/living – that God’s approval and pleasing Him is all that matters. Thanks for sharing this truth today and I hope that others will live in God’s promises and love and have confidence in their relationship with Him that He’s all we need.

  194. I absolutely love your devotion! It blesses my heart and encourages me so much!
    I’ve always had confidence issues! HE is building my confidence and walk with him and with other believers!

  195. I am trying, desperately trying to internalize and fully believe that no matter what, God loves me and is there for me, not to criticize me but to encourage me. I have been a Christian for some 37 years now; I thought as I grew older that my walk with the Lord would become easier. Instead it has become so much more difficult with the death of parents, the rejection and estrangement of a daughter, two heart surgeries of my own, multiple heart medications, the pre-mature loss of a career I loved, and now depression. I hold onto the promise that Jesus is there in the midst of my lonely and imperfect life and that I do have worth and purpose, although right now I don’t feel that is the case. Your blog message today helped me to remember once again that I am not alone is my insecurities; that the One who loved me so much He laid down His life for me is present in my life and cares, even when I don’t feel His presence – and so I place my trust in Him once again, secure in the knowledge that He has a plan admidst all my hurt, sorrow, sadness, and chaos, and then I keep putting one foot in front of the other and face another day – together with Him and His perfect love.

  196. I doubt myself all the time, where I am, who I am, what I need, what I don’t need, am I good enough, strong enough, woman enough? How pleasing it is to know that God loves me. He just loves me – no matter what. He just loves me. Wow – that’s a thought that I battle to fathom, or understand, but He just does love me. I don’t need to feel it, I just need to know that its true. Because His word tells me that it is.

  197. I have raised two children who are now 23 and 20 and had very little difficulty with them. I also have a 13 year old who is making me doubt my mothering skills. I keep telling myself each child is different and most probably I had these same issues with my older ones but it is a struggle every day to know just what to say so that this child won’t go down a road that doesn’t need to be traveled. I am so afraid I won’t do something right and I will lose this one to the evils of this world. I am trusting that God will protect them and He knows they path they will take. I just pray my child will be perceptive to Him! Thanks for allowing us to get this off of our heart and I pray for those others who are struggling with imperfection. God bless!

  198. I thought that being perfect was the way to go i was afraid to make mistakes until it dawned on me that i was so insecure and i doubted myself so much..i couldnt believe that i was good enough but reading about a confident heart chapter 2 was like it was me that Jesus was after.Am thankful because the Lord has used you to reach out to women and see the love that chris has for us and that Jesus sees all my pain and He has been there all along.I pray that i would get the chance to read the whole book and to experience more about the love of Jesus and stop feeling like no one really cares but Jesus really does.Am ready to start a new life of appreciatingg myself and loving me.thank you..God bless you

  199. Monica G says:

    Wow, this is so relevant to my life right now. I play a sport where teammates can put ridiculously high expectations on others and when I fail to meet them, I feel worthless. I know in Jesus eyes that I’m not worthless, but taking that mindset out on to the track is difficult for me to remember. Each day is about trying to live with Jesus at the forefront, so praise God I can begin a new each time I fail. Thank you for sharing your heart with us in your writing. I can’t wait to read the rest of the book.Blessings.

  200. Catherine H says:

    Thank you for this beautiful reminder. I’m a working mom, and right now dealing with an absent husband and a hurting relationship. Trying to hold myself together, my household together and my children together has been more than I can bear. Thank you God for having my back and believing in me!

  201. Chasidy says:

    Thank you for this post. It is so incredibly easy to doubt and just not ‘feel like enough’ in so many areas. I appreciate your reminder that I don’t have to get it all right & I don’t have to be perfect. God’s got this and I need to trust Him completely and live to please Him above all else. I would love to win your book because I could really benefit from or reading it & will be happy to share it with my sister when I’m done with it. Thanks again.

  202. This really spoke to my heart this morning. Am at a place in my life where I am seeking to be all that God wants me to be. Sometimes I feel that He can’t use me because of my flaws. Trusting God for the TRUTH that He is LORD and that He will perfect those flaws. thank you so much for your devotionals. They help me get through my days.

  203. Thank you for these words along with the words on the Proverbs 31 website. I am going through a situation right now and needed the reminder that the only opinion that really matters is God’s opinion of me. Thank you for the encouragement!

  204. Andrea Snyder says:

    This is something I struggle with daily. Ever since I was a little girl, I have tried to be perfect. Not for myself but for others. I can’t stand to see the people I care about hurting. This has made life so difficult for me. I constantly feel like a failure. At 36 years old, I still seek approval from my parents. I am a mother to 3 amazing daughters. I know I’m a great mom, but everytime they do something wrong, I blame myself. I know I shouldn’t but old habits die hard. Thanks :)

  205. This is just what I needed to hear today. Thank you for sharing what a lot of us are afraid to say out loud. Love your posts!

  206. Ruth McCarter says:

    I get up on some days feeling I’ve got the world by the tail ! My husband died and I have spent the last 2 years trying to figure things out that he forgot to tell me before he died. I didn’t even know how to turn on the mower because it was one of those O turn jobbies. I have had to learn to handle the bills because my husband did all that. I have been trying to budget and put back money to no avail. I checked my checking account this morning and sure enough I have gotten overdrawn again! I get paid the first of the month and that is 5 days from now! I don’t know what I am doing half the time. I look forward to going to bed at night so I won’t have to think about it. I know that the Lord does not want me to handle my problems this way and I know he is in control of my life but some days it sure doesn’t feel like it! Any advice?

    Ruth

  207. Thank you Renee, a timely word. I am in a hard spot, but it is between “THE ROCK” and a hard place. I too am a people pleaser . In the past 6 week one child came home to spend the time while her sister got married, my son struggle until the end, but succeeded in Graduating from Hi School and get his first job, the one who got married and all the stuff that goes with that project and I have been unemployed and looking for a new adventure in the business world for this empty nester who is turning 55 in August.
    I just know that I must trust that GOD is in control of all! I remind myself daily that HE is the only one I am to please and when I fail….HE forgives.

    Thank you.

  208. Hannah Stiff says:

    Hello, my name is Hannah. I have recently been through a heart break. Although it would seem miniscule to most, this is my first time. He was my best friend of 7 years and the only boy I knew I could trust. Lately it seems as though my heart is heavy when pain, and rejection. I’ve never felt so unwanted in my entire life. My friend Kaylee has been going through the study of your devotional A Confident Heart, and when I was finally able to talk about all of this with her last week she suggested for the thousandth time that I invest in your book. I must say that I was hesitant and I’m praying so hard right now that God take away some of this pain, but I feel as though your book may be exactly what I need. I know others have it worse than me, and I get that, but it doesnt mean that what I’m going through still isnt hard. I would be more than grateful at a chance to have a copy of your book. Thank you for your time and honesty about life. It seems here lately thats something I look foward to the most, knowing I’m not the only one who is has ever felt this way. Your honesty through out the devotions I have read so far is inspiring to say the least. I dont want to be perfect, I just want to feel whole.

    Thank you,
    Hannah.

  209. Renee just want you to know that God is using your ministry to keep my head above water right now. Thank you for your transparency and willingness to share!

  210. My first visit here; I was so moved by the Proverbs 31 Devotional: You are Never Alone! Thank you… I am a wife, mother of 5, homeschooler, tutor, and child of the Living God. I have been surprised by the loneliness I have experienced due to the necessity to remain at home most of the time. I often miss Bible Study or Church due to sick children and recent health issues. I have quite an adventurous spirit and simply did not expect the difficulty of the mundane – it has been one of the most painful tools to holiness, but I (we) am not alone!!!!!! He will never leave me or forsake me – appreciate the reminder! Would benefit from the devotional… God Bless.

  211. kimberly says:

    I was just introduced to your blog today, Renee. I am constantly amazed by how God speaks to us women in our deepest need and then leads us to share our vulnerability with others who need the same hug message. I am that person today (no doubt one of many) who needed to hear this today. I believe wholeheartedly in a God who saves and loves and cares for me, but my fear is overwhelming!! I was recently fired from my job after that job bringing me back to my home town where I desperately want to be and I feel so alone, and so far behind!! In fact I “feel” like a bog fat failure, and then…..I feel guilty for feeling that. I want so many things and I believe they are desires God himself has given me, but there is a wall between me and those things that seems impossible to climb. Will I ever marry? Will I ever be a mother(I just turned 38)? Will I be able to go back to school? Will I find a job? Will I be able to pay my bills between now and then? Lots of questions….and lots of fear…..and I know that is a lack a faith…why is it that I can have unending faith when it comes to others but for me….just fear? I know God is a loving God who wants great things for His children, me included….so how do I truly let go of the fear and trust?
    Thank you for providing a place to share…..

  212. Lesly Verbeten says:

    Boy, have I been walking through this so much in the past two years! I have gone through the loss of a marriage and a complete overhaul of myself in the process as I have laid myself bare before the Lord to let Him work in me through the pain. He has been walking me through becoming free of depending on approval of others. I still struggle…but I am working on depending on Him as my source, my confidence. I want Him to be all I need. I want to see myself as He sees me and to find my value in Him. Your book really helped me quite a bit, and I am hoping to read it again. Thank you for your ministry. I like being real…if I don’t have to be perfect, then those looking at me don’t feel like they have to be either, and it takes a lot of pressure off. We can rely on Him for grace to help us in our weakness.

  213. Thank you so much for this timely message for someone learning I don’t have to be perfect.

  214. I have been beginning to read A Confident Heart and I feel like I am reading my own journal! I can identify with this book so well! I am definitely wanting to try out the devotional and journal! I allow what others think to cloud my awareness of what my FATHER says about me! I am fearfully and wonderfully made! Thanks for all that you do!

  215. Sheri Hanson says:

    I am in alanon which is a program for people affected by alcoholism. We work on ourselves and our own defects of character and this blog post was very relateable for me and to the alanon program and giving “it” all to God. Forgiving ourselves may be one of the hardest things to do.

    Thanks

  216. Katrina says:

    Thank you Jesus for today’s post. I suffer from a form of perfectionism, if that’s a word, and it has prevented me from following through on projects that I know God is waiting to bless others through as well as myself. It has caused me to procrastinate and rush the finished product, so consistent reminders placed in strategic places help me to stay out of my head with negative talk and helps me stay focus on the task at hand. Why is it that we block out the positive comments and receive the negative ones? I have to stop with the negative selftalk, thais paralizes me more than any negative comments from others. I thank God that He has gifted you to reach out and share with others that find it hard to either articulate what they are feeling or are to ashamed to admit them for fear of not being perfect. I love your Ministry Renee!

    Katrina

  217. Charity says:

    I thank God for His grace, He loves me even with my flaws and sin.

  218. I have and still going through building my confidence in christ. I had four children out of wedlock, I got saved at the age of 14 i am now 27. you can understand the looks, judgements that i receive from other believers in the church.

    I am reminded daily of how i’ve sinned, trying to get out there and using my past for good instead of beating myself with it.. is a trying task.

    One day at a time….. I know God will see me through.

    • You are not your past Sheala. You are not your decisions. You are redeemed and created for a purpose only you can fulfill!! I hope you’ll read the story of Sam in John 4 with fresh yes and a open heart, looking to see how she went back to her hometown with her head held high knowing they all knew everything about her – but Jesus did too and His acceptance and grace had changed everything. She was no longer running from those who judged her, she was running to them.

      Those people who look and judge have their own sins, maybe just not as public. Just smile and whisper, “bless their hearts Jesus” and go about living fully in the beautiful redeemed life He’s given you!

  219. Barbara says:

    Well, thank you for sharing your thoughtful thoughts, at times if sure feels as if its only you that are going throught that, i can relate to it, however i decide to keep at times things inside, in reality i do not friends, i guess it was a process in understanding what GOD wanted from me, to be alone , well thank you for your time! :) GOD BLESS YOU. the article i feel its a great help to relate, one another.

  220. Thank you for this devotional. As a stay-at-home mom of a toddler, Im constantly trying to match myself against every other mom I meet. So much that it is exhausting! I can totally relate to not remembering ten good comments, and the one negative remark. Im hugely grateful for the reminder that I am made exactly the way I should be. God bless you!

  221. Oh Evana. I really get it!! That was me when my boys were toddlers. And now they are teenagers and we adopted a baby 4 years ago so I get another chance. And can I just say, Im not going there again! ALl that comparison and mommy guilt is the enemy’s way of stealing your joy and robbing you of sweet memories and messy-beautiful days God wants to give you and your little one in this season of motherhood.

    Please, please, please don’t let Satan win. You are exactly the mom God hand-picked for your child. You don’t need to be like any other mom. Just be the best you that you can be. It’s the most awesome gift you can give your little. Trust me. :)

  222. Janelle says:

    I just started looking today for a devotional or book related to self-esteem and I saw a link to a cross post of one of your blog posts on a friend’s facebook. Your book looks like it could be really helpful to me as I work through some deep-seated issues that need to be uprooted. I’m tired of them often rearing their ugly heads!

  223. I read your devotional from the Proverbs 31 website this morning. Thank you for letting God use you to speak to me. I seem to be so sensitive to comments of others and often forget that I only need to please God. I don’t know why it is so hard to hold onto that concept. Thank you for the reminder that I don’t need to be perfect especially in the eyes of others. I only need to strive to please God.

  224. Just in time when I feel like I failed again.

  225. Reading these words about criticsm, made me think about myself and the affect I may have on my loved one when I am talking to him. Sometimes when you’re trying to get your point across and you’re hurt and frustrated, you have to remember not to kill the other person’s spirit with your words just because you are hurting. I also like the way, you explained that Love is kind, patient and not keeping a record of someone’s wrongdoings. You have to move on and try and grow, the constantly beat the other person up for something that may or may not have happened. It’s difficult when your newly married and you have someone you are married to that is not as emotional or affectionate as you are. These words have truly made an imprint on my way of thinking. Thank you

  226. Reading this this morning was so timely. I was praying this on my way to work and wondering what my purpose is and doubting myself. I didn’t read this on the day it came out but it’s just what I needed to read today. If I don’t win I’m still going to get this devotional because it really is speaking to my heart and what I need right now. Thank you and God bless you.

  227. When i think I have it all together my world is torn apart by thoughts of self- doubt. Your words on criticize stopped me in my tracks and made me realize that I am ok just as I am. Thank you for changing where my thoughts meed to be focused, not on me but on God.

  228. Margaret says:

    I was delighted to find your blog today, June 27. I was reading my daily devotionals including the email I received from Proverbs 31. As it happens many times, the readings meshed perfectly for me. Today’s message went straight to my heart and gave me new energy to face the tasks ahead. Thanks for your comforting words. Please enter me in the drawing for your devotional book. I am very much interested in learning more about your ministry.

  229. Michelle Pyles says:

    Thank you for sharing your heart..
    Was the perfect day for me to read this devotion…

  230. But keep moving towards perfection, because perfection is not a place but a journey. God said to Moses “work with me and be thou perfect “(Genesis 17:1) so its a continues work. you must crave to be perfect and working towards it , don’t stop and say after all no matter what , I can’t be perfect , try to be a better person today than yesterday.

    Stop by and read our daily devotional at
    http://www.everydaydevotional.com/

  231. Thank you for the encouraging reminder. I often get discouraged when my husband is negative about what I haven’t accomplished instead of noticing what I have done. Thank you for the encouragement.

  232. Marie-claire says:

    I got your devotional as a free book of the day and I love it, sometimes I feel we are the same person, your story about locking yourself in the room with the kids when your husband is gone is so me, lol. I like how your devotional is so down to earth and I can so relate to it. I also like how the verse is often repeated a few times that way it really sinks in.

  233. Renee, thank you so much for your prayers, transparency and reminders of Gods truths and promises for us. I just spent a weekend away with a few of my best’ees and it always comes up…..Lord help us to see ourselves as you see us and live as daughters of The Most High King!

  234. Paula Collins says:

    I love the weight which can be lifted from my heart and mind knowing I do not need to be perfect. Society would have us put so much pressure to be the best at everything; but you know what, this is impossible. Someone will always appear better. Also, if we strive for perfection, then we become our own god, so when we screw up (which happens daily) we set ourselves up for disaster. This is part of what causes addictions, denials, and for some, death. At church today I was reminded of Romans 5:8~God demonstrated his love for us, in that while we were still sinner, Christ died for us.

  235. I super love it :))
    this book really help me so much..not just to stop doubting my self But to also stop doubting our God

  236. Thank you Renee your a blessing :)

  237. I loved your devotional and would love to read your book. I am going through a lot right now. I am pregnant (about 10 weeks) and THOUGHT I had bad morning sickness with my first child. I was completely wrong. I haven’t stepped on the scale since my first doctors appointment a few weeks ago. There’s no need. You can tell by one glance that I am past being malnourished. We have tried everything. I’ve been through 3 different medications, tried everything that worked and didn’t work with the first child, and everything in between. My husband, who I know loves me and would do just about anything for me, is really good and loving at times, but then after a while he thinks I should just miraculously get better. I love him, but its at times like that that I really struggle and have to turn to God to keep my head straight. Cause I really want to put the blame on him and say that he can see what I’m going through so he shouldn’t act like that. But then God told me the other day that yes he can see me but he can’t see inside me and I haven’t always told him just what is going on and how it feels. I also haven’t told him the emotional side of what it is doing to me and how I not only feel like a bad mother, but a bad wife as well.

  238. This post is such an encouragement. I’ve battled against perfectionism and control for many years and it is such a great reminder that Christ not only knows what I’m going through but He is sticking with me! Thank you for this post!

  239. I really enjoyed A Confident Heart, It helped me see myself a little more the way God sees me. I enjoyed it so much that I bought a copy for a supervisor who also struggles with self esteem. I am thinking of leading a ladies bible study at my church on this book, I just need to remember to look at myself in God’s way. I would never be able to do it on my own,

  240. I so struggle with self confidence. Hard to forgive myself of my past.

Trackbacks

  1. […] When I read Renee Swope’s devotion the other day it reminded me of how critical words from someone can trigger in us, the “pain of failure, regret, and flaw-focused thinking” (Renee Swope, June 24, 2014, You’ll Never Be Perfect {and that’s a good thing} ). […]

  2. […] You’ll Never Be Perfect {Giveaway} […]

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