“But when David’s oldest brother, Eliab, heard David talking to the men, he was angry. ‘What are you doing around here anyway?’ he demanded. ‘What about those few sheep you’re supposed to be taking care of? I know about your pride and deceit. You just want to see the battle!’… ‘Don’t be ridiculous!’ Saul replied. ‘There’s no way you can fight this Philistine and possibly win! You’re only a boy, and he’s been a man of war since his youth.’” (1 Samuel 17:28, 33)
David was put down left and right for being in the camp and challenging Goliath. David had to hear things like: "You shouldn't be here," "You're too young," and "You're not equipped enough." I can only imagine how discouraging that could be. If David listened to and believed the words of his doubters, it would have shut him down completely. He would've gone back to shepherding his sheep, missed the opportunity to defeat Goliath and left Israel in trouble. So what kept David going? David knew who he was and more importantly, he knew who God is and nothing anyone said could come against that belief because he was secure in his identity.
I remember being in my alone time with God one morning when God told me, "You still don't believe that you are who I say you are." It stopped me dead in my tracks. I broke down in tears. I'd been listening to all the doubts in my head about myself and found myself holding back for the fear of not being enough or not meeting the expectations of what others wanted to see from me. Little by little, through experiences and trials and self-reflection and through His word, He began to show me who I really am: fearless, chosen and qualified. It was a process and yet I found so much freedom. Even today, I have to decide daily to believe in what God says about me. After all, He created me and He would know better than anyone.
Do you really believe you are everything He says you are? Because you will continue hold back of all He's called you to, until you believe in who He says you are. Insecurity, even in the best of leaders, is a hard-core battle, especially when it's become a mindset or natural way of thinking. It has been said, on average people need 10 compliments for every one critic, because we have this misconstrued thinking of outweighing our weaknesses over our strengths. However, God qualifies us. His word says He is made perfect in our weakness. We have to get to a place, like David, to where we know who we are and not a doubt in all the world could change that and not a single doubt in our mind could oppress us. We need to get to a place where we would step up to all that God’s called us to, being fearlessly ourselves, living by the power of God.
Shut up the lies floating through your mind. The ones telling you you're not ______ enough. You fill in the blank. We need to quiet the lies that compare ourselves with this person and that person. What people think about you doesn't define you, never stoop down to what they want to see. Remember you embody whatever you choose to think of yourself, even if it's not who you really are.
Do you know how to encourage yourself in the Lord when everything and everyone seems to be caving in around you? What kind of thoughts do you have toward yourself under pressure? Are they self-defeating or self-building? Do they draw you down further into despair or push you up to press on?
Whatever you think about yourself and believe, you will become. God defines you and He's planned the unthinkable for you, but we have to choose to believe in this powerful identity we have in Him and never look back. Then, like David, we can take on victorious and unstoppable thinking. We need more leaders for this generation who are fearlessly themselves and fully surrendered to Christ alone. When we can kneel to the power of the Lord, we will soon find that we can stand up to anything else in this world.