No one can make us feel quite as unsure about ourselves as another woman. And nothing can wound as much as the words that sometimes come from a friend or from inside our own head. That’s why (in)courage exists as an online community committed to making safe spaces for women to connect. Every Wednesday this month we’ll be sharing some of our stories of overcoming insecurity in order to choose friendship on purpose. We hope you’ll read along and then join us in a weekly Community Challenge geared toward kicking insecurity to the curb and connecting more deeply with our friends.
Week 1: The Insecurity of Being “Not Enough”
I have a fraud problem.
Not related to credit, but related to my soul.
I worry that I’m a fraud writer.
I worry that I don’t write deep enough or brave enough or bold enough. And I worry that it’s because my life isn’t deep enough or brave enough or bold enough.
I feel vanilla on the inside, and it makes me embarrassed on the outside.
What if I dig deep and all that comes out are more stories about my kids and my temper and my sink full of seemingly-always-dirty dishes? Because seven years into this world of online storytelling and it seems I keep writing the same story over and over again.
So the fraud burrows into my soul, and I look at my laptop and wonder why I bother. Because there is always someone who is going to say it in words that are more authentic or more powerful than mine. And I know in my head that these seemingly boring and ordinary stories are the stuff of miracle and wonder. I do. But there are days I don’t believe what I know.
There are days at conferences and events where I’m embarrassed to be the “mommy blogger” of the group who isn’t considered a serious writer because she doesn’t write about serious things. That I’m not edgy enough or interesting enough or serious enough. I have this whole crazy inner monologue that discredits me and my book and my blog and my place in the world of writers where I don’t have permission to have a voice or a story because I’m “just the mom who writes about motherhood. Again.”
And it can do crazy things to your head when you’re trying to make friends or be a decent friend because you’re so often worrying if anyone even takes you seriously as a writer or if they’re just being polite.
And writing this down is such a lame insecurity that it seems to underscore the initial problem of not being interesting enough even when it comes to my insecurities.
And then I read this:
You have searched me, Lord, and You know me.
And it’s such a relief.
It’s such a relief to remember that I can’t be a poser when it comes to God – whether I was trying to be or not – because He already knows me. Deeply – on my bad hair and crabby at the world and dissatisfied with what I write and live days, He knows all of that. Without me saying a word.
You know when I sit and when I rise; You perceive my thoughts from afar.
I don’t have to be interesting or edgy or extra brave, or pretend I’m anything that I’m not because everything I do is already relevant to the God who is interested in when I sit and when I rise. When I wash my dishes and when I get called to wipe my daughter’s bottom in the bathroom. He is invested in my ordinary. I matter to Him. Not because of what I do, but because He has made me. Period. How can the story God wrote, that He is writing in me, be boring?
You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
All. My. Ways. are already familiar to my God. I don’t need to push the envelope of unfamiliar because I am known, I am discerned from the inside out and there’s nothing vanilla about that. No, to be known like that is to be free. To be pursued. To be beautiful. To be worthy. To be enough.
Before a word is on my tongue You, Lord, know it completely.
Every word, every blog post, every thought, every worry or compliment or insecurity — my God knows them all and cups them in His hands and me in His heart — and in Him I. Am. Enough.
You hem me in behind and before, and You lay Your hand upon me.
There is no breaking out of the box or the mold or the model or the ordinary when it comes to being known by God. Nothing that I can do can impress Him because He has already laid His hand on me and His Son down for me and all I have to do is receive it.
He is enough.
Deep enough, brave enough, bold enough.
And on the days I waver and doubt (and there are many of those), it just doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter because some things remain true even on the days you struggle to believe them.
Do you believe that?
Won’t you join our community challenge?
This week, let’s spend time in prayer and write down the insecurity we’re currently struggling with most (in your private journal or in the blog comments below), and ask God to begin to reveal His truth about who we are in Him.