Do you ever struggle with self-doubt?
Self-doubt can be crippling. Trust me. I speak from experience on this one.
I have been struggling with so much self-doubt lately.
I am not being the wife and mom that I desire to be, and I feel that I am failing my husband and children.
My homeschooling attempts feel completely inadequate.
Grocery shopping and meal preparations have been far from stellar lately. (Last evening after waiting 45 minutes for my rice maker to make the rice, my 8 year old son checked it and informed me that I had never pushed “start”. For Pete’s sake, how hard is it to make rice in a rice maker? I did get dinner on the table – by 7:20 p.m.)
And this blog? I want to write from my heart. I want to encourage and inspire you to keep on teaching your kids about the Bible. But, the last few days I have been so close to closing it down – because I seriously don’t have what it takes to run this blog.
Do you ever struggle with the crippling effects of self-doubt? Do you ever feel like “throwing in the towel” because you just don’t have what it takes to keep on going?
I love how God speaks to us through His Holy Word. Just as I was on the verge of giving up, I read the story of Moses.
Now, Moses was a man who had some serious self-doubt issues.
If you read the story of Moses, you will notice that God’s hand was obviously on his life from birth.
Moses was born into a family of Israelite slaves living in Egypt. According to Pharoah’s law, Moses should have been killed at birth. But, Moses’ mother trusted God and defied the law, finally putting Moses in a basket in a river when she could no longer hide him. Then, according to God’s perfect plan, Pharoah’s daughter found Moses and adopted him as her own son.
So, Moses, the son of Israelite slaves, was brought up and educated in an Egyptian palace.
God was sovereignly preparing Moses to lead His people, Israel. Eighty years later, God came to Moses in a burning bush and told him that it was time for Israel to be freed from the oppression of the Egyptians.
You can almost see Moses excitedly nodding his head in agreement – until God said, “Therefore, come now, and I will send YOU to Pharaoh, so that YOU may bring My people out of Egypt.”
And, Moses did a double-take. “What, ME?”
Here was a man who had already experienced God’s intervention in his life, miraculously preparing him to lead his people. Yet, when the call came, Moses was immediately crippled with self-doubt.
Moses said, “Who am I?” God said, “It doesn’t matter who you are. I am God. I have called you. I will be with you. This is my work and I will see it done.”
Moses said, “They will not listen to me.” God said, “This is my message. I will back up your words with miracles and signs that they will not be able to ignore.”
Moses said, “I can’t speak well.” God said, “I made your mouth. I will teach you what to say.”
Moses said, “Send somebody else who is better equipped.” And God’s anger burned against Moses.
I don’t know about you, but I am so much like Moses.
I claim to believe that all things are possible with God, but I struggle to believe that God could actually use me. I believe that God can do amazing things through other people – but I know my own heart, my own weaknesses, my own limitations and sinfulness. I’m the one who struggles to make rice in a rice maker, to get dinner on the table before 7:00 p.m.
So, I claim that I am just too… weak, sinful, you name it, for God to use. And, I might even pride myself on my humility as I ignore God’s calling.
When it comes to God’s calling on our lives, self-doubt is nothing but God-doubt and pride.
Because, when God calls us to do something, He is the One Who will do it through us. He is the One Who will give us the strength and grace to get it done. And, in the end, He is the One Who will get all of the glory.
When God calls us to do something, we will feel inadequate. In fact, it is when we come to the end of our strength, when we see just how limited and weak we really are, when we acknowledge our own great inability, that we learn to lean on God. And, that is when God can use us.
1 Corinthians 1:26-29 reminds us that God often calls us precisely because of our weaknesses.
But our fear and our inadequacies do not give us a pass to not obey God when He calls us to do something beyond our abilities.
Because, it never was about us or our abilities. It is all about God and His abilities.
Is He calling you to teach a Sunday School class?
Is He calling you to forgive your husband and give your marriage another chance?
Has He called you to faithfully parent a difficult child?
Has He called you to patiently go over those multiplication facts YET AGAIN as you homeschool your child?
Is He calling you to speak truth into your friend’s life, even though she may not want to hear it?
Has He called you into a period of poor health where all you can do is quietly watch life go by from the background and pray for others?
Is He calling you to a season of denying yourself, working hard, and saving every penny so that you can pay off debt?
Is He calling you to set aside your own desires in order to tackle the dirty dishes in your sink and make dinner – for the ten thousandth time?
I don’t know what God has called you to do today, but I do know that, no matter what His calling, He will give you the strength to accomplish His purpose in your life. He is simply asking you to look to Him.
Look to Him for your strength.
Look to Him to cleanse your heart of sin.
Look to Him when you are exhausted and at the end of your strength.
Look to Him for the endurance and patience you need to continue on.
When you are bewildered and don’t know where to turn, look to Him for the skill and wisdom that you so desperately need.
When you feel like you cannot take one more step, look to Him for the courage to take that next step of obedience. And the next step. And the next step.
The path of obedience won’t be easy. It wasn’t for Moses. He experienced discouragement, frustration, exhaustion, and foolish moments when he allowed sin to master him.
Yet, when we remember Moses, we don’t remember the fearful whiner of Exodus 4, begging God to send someone else. We remember a strong man of God who walked in obedience during a difficult time and was used of God in a mighty way to bring about a great salvation for an entire nation.
In the end, it wasn’t Moses. It was God. And, it will be God in your life, and it will be God in my life. God will give us the strength to accomplish His calling in our lives.
Today, when self-doubt threatens to cripple you, look to God and replace your self-doubt with God-trust. May He be honored and glorified in your life and mine!
How about you? Are you ready to be done with self-doubt and insecurity? Would you like to take the next step? Check out this Bible study and mentoring group from Arabah Joy. I’ve already signed up. Would you like to join too?
May God bless you!