Steering Clear of the Trap of Self-Doubt

The gospel teaches us about our depravity: How, if left to our corrupt nature, we would be unable to please God and thus earn the blessings and grace of God.

This truth gives birth to a humility within us that causes us to accept our weakness and rely on the strength that is in Christ's finished work.

It is a completely different route, however, to walk in self-doubt. While we are not to trust in our own strength, the gospel does not cause us to doubt ourselves, feel condemned or become limited. On the contrary, the gospel empowers us to do great things.

A fine line exists between self-doubt and humility before Christ. A demarcation definitely exists, and we need the Holy Spirit to help us spot it. The enemy is out to steal, kill and destroy our relationships with God, our access to Him and His blessing (John 10:10). The enemy uses subtle traps to confuse us and get us on the wrong path. Self-doubt is one of them.

The Fruit Is Based on the Root

What is the difference between self-doubt, which leads to false humility, and true humility, which is born through the gospel?

The major difference is the fruit they both bring. Self-doubt leads to guilt, shame and a loss of will to pursue the things of God.

Humility leads to a strength that empowers us through the power of the Holy Spirit.

When exposed to the message of the gospel, what does it compel you to do? Does it drive you to despair and a feeling of hopelessness? Does it cause you to feel inadequate and lead you to try to earn God's favour and grace? Or do you respond to it in peace knowing that even in our hopelessness, God imputes value, power and blessings to us through Christ?

Escape the Trap of Self-Doubt

Maybe you find yourself trapped in self-doubt and you think that's where God wants you to be. Be well assured that He does not. Hebrews 10:35-36 tells us, "Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised."

God brings confidence and power, not fear and self-doubt. His perfect love casts out all fear. We may walk in His grace knowing that God can and will empower us to do His work.

Your pursuit of Christ is not over. If you feel it is, you're in a trap. But even in this predicament, Jesus has made a way out and can pull you from the miry clay (Psalm 40:2). All you have to do is reach out.