Confidence, by definition, is the state of feeling certain about the truth of something. There is always a lot of talk about self confidence, and confidence in our horses or in our training. But I have to admit, most of the chatter about those things still leaves me feeling empty and like I’m grasping for something unattainable.
If you ever spend much time thinking about how fragile life is, how fragile and intricate our bodies are, or how quickly life can completely change, then perhaps you have also wondered about this whole confidence thing and what exactly you put your confidence in too.
I came face to face with this a month ago when I went under anesthesia for back surgery. I had all kinds of crazy thoughts leading up to my surgery such as, “What if I don’t wake up”, “What if they screw something up and it ends up worse than before”, “What if they damage the nerve they are working around and I can’t walk again”.
My friends and family would all say reassuring things and try to help me feel more confident about the whole thing. But the reality that I really needed to face was that I had misplaced my confidence.
Life can change in the blink of an eye. Absolutely anything can happen. Loss, sickness, broken bodies, failure, unemployment, divorce and broken families are just a few of those life experiences that none of us are immune to.
I see the frailty of life like a glass jar. It doesn’t take much to completely shatter a jar. On its own, it has very little strength or resilience. It cannot withstand pressure. It wouldn’t survive a fall. It is completely reliant on the protection of the one holding on.
Sometimes it takes a reality check for me, like back surgery or breaking my leg or having a close call when i’m driving to shake me up a little and remind me of what I know to be TRUE.
I can TRUST and have complete CONFIDENCE in the One who is holding on to me. My faith in Jesus Christ is the only confidence I have in life. Although on my own I have very little strength or resilience, I am held by the creator of the universe whose strength and protection is unfathomable.
Everything else can be stripped away in a second. Every crutch that we lean on, whether it is our health, our finances, our spouse, kids, our careers or horses… it can all be gone in an instant. Misplacing your confidence in those things will always leave you feeling empty and grasping for something tangible to put your confidence in. You will perpetually look for reassurance from the wrong things and your whole identity could be wrapped up completely in something that could shatter with one little fall.
What if you could breathe in the feeling of complete confidence? What if you could live a life in pursuit of grace instead of pursuing the things that give you a momentary boost of confidence? How would placing your confidence in the Lord change your outlook on life, on competition, on your career, on your relationships?
From my own experience, there is no greater feeling than trusting the God of the universe to hold me in the palm of His hand. No amount of success, no accomplishments, money or fame could ever come close to the confidence and assurance I have in Christ.
“For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear, I will help you.” Isaiah 41:13
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