3 ways to shield ourselves from self-doubt
I once thought that my self-doubt was a sign of humility that honoured God, and that the consequence it brought was simply the "cost of following Christ."
I was mistaken. While the Bible does teach us to put our faith in Christ and not on ourselves, this doesn't mean that we are to doubt ourselves.
Self-doubt, in fact, can actually fall under a sub-category of pride. While it's good to put our full trust in God and not in our own abilities and works, self-doubt can take us down a winding path leading to false humility. Ungodly self-doubt convinces us that because we are not good enough, there's no point in approaching God, serving Him, and probably serving others.
Self-doubt freezes us. But it's clear that Christ's commission seeks to mobilise us with our confidence rightly placed on Him as we acknowledge that we are now His channels, His examples, and His manifestation. God instructs us to put our faith on Him and not ourselves, that's true. But to doubt one's capacity and calling is a different monster altogether. God, in fact, wants us to approach Him with confidence, not doubt.
But doubt does often creep in uninvited.
Here are three ways to shield ourselves from the paralysing effects of ungodly self-doubt.
1.Take the burden off yourself
We are least prone to doubt our capacities and our direction when we take more of the burden off ourselves and surrender it to Christ. Basically, we need to get it into our system that the things God has called us to is not up to us but up to Jesus and His faithfulness.
Matthew 11:28-29 says, "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."
2. Connect to the Spirit
God's Spirit builds our confidence because the Holy Spirit brings a revelation of God's love, and His perfect love casts out all fear. 2 Timothy 1:7 reminds us, "For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control."
On a regular basis, we must approach God and ask for His presence to follow us wherever we go. When we are in God's Spirit, there is freedom even from the dangers of self-doubt.
3. Remember whose image you are made in
The first time Adam and Eve sinned, one of the strategies of the serpent was to put doubt in the likeness of God in them. The enemy said that eating of the tree would make them "like God" when fact was that they were already like God in many ways. Genesis 1:27 says, "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them."
While we have distorted God's image in ourselves, Jesus has redeemed us and created us once more in His image so that we are now once more given the privilege to be righteous, not through our works but according to God's grace.