"Believe in yourself!"
"You got this."
"You can do whatever you want to do."
These are sentences that the world throws our way on a consistent basis. They're on home decor, T-shirts, magazine covers, and all throughout the media.
Constant messages meant to encourage young people to believe in themselves, the power of their dreams, and the ability to do whatever they want in life.
And they seem harmless at first, right?
What's wrong with believing in yourself? Or believing that you've got what it takes to make your dreams come true? Well, nothing. From the surface.
But as I've looked around at my generation listening to these things, I've begun to see a pattern. A pattern of young people becoming prideful in their self-confidence and believing that they can do things their own way.
I'm definitely not exempt from this either. I've tried to do things on my own. I've tried to just "believe in myself."
And do you know what I've found?
When we try to believe that we've got things on our own and we can be confident in our own abilities to handle life, we will fail because we were never meant to do things on our own. We were not created to just believe in ourselves.
John 14:1 encourages us, "Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me."
In this verse Jesus doesn't say, "You believe in God, believe also in yourself." Nope. He says to believe in Him.
In Philippians 4:13 it says: "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." It doesn't end at "I can do all things." It says that we can only do all those things through Christ.
When I think back to John 14:1, the first part of it really gets me. Don't let your heart be troubled. At what point does my heart become troubled with anxiety? When I'm believing in myself to do everything.
I believe that self-confidence is a lie the world is feeding us. The lie that, "If you work hard enough, you can do whatever you want to do. Just believe in yourself." That sort of self-confidence is a lie.
And here's the true reality: On your own you can do nothing. But with God on your side, anything is possible.
So what have I learned about true confidence in this world that has told me to just believe in myself? I have learned that God-confidence is what I need most of all, not self-confidence. And that true confidence comes from my belief in God's ability to work everything out for good.
I don't have this on my own, but I know the One who's got me. I don't have the ability to make every single one of my dreams come true, but I know the One who holds my future and has good plans for me, whatever they may include.
I believe in the God who loves me endlessly, and that gives me the courage to believe in who He has created me to be for His glory.
Where is your confidence today?