Today we are going to be talking about something that comes up over and over again when I’m coaching other women: low self-esteem.
Highlights from the Show
Have you ever struggled with low self-esteem?
If you have struggled with low self-esteem, you are not alone. Confidence is something we have all struggled with.
I want to encourage you by telling you that confidence is part of your right as a child of God.
So why do so many Christian women, daughters of God, struggle with self-esteem and low body image?
After coaching many women, I have come to the conclusion that low self-esteem is centered around self. A lot of times, people think that insecurity is the same as humility. As Christians, we know that we are supposed to be humble, and some people are tricked into thinking that they have to be insecure to be humble.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
Confidence and humility should be portrayed at the same time. You can have both!
Low Self Esteem is still centered around self
Make no mistake: insecurity is not the same as humility. Humility is about not thinking of yourself often; insecurity is thinking of yourself all the time.
Someone with low self-esteem considers themselves to be worth little. They are constantly thinking about how little they are worth and all the ways they don’t measure up. Notice, though, that they are still thinking about themselves.
If this is you, I want to encourage you to move from insecurity to confidence. The first step to moving forward is figuring out how you determine your own worth.
How would you decide that? What factors would you take into account?
The world would look at some of these things to determine your worth:
- The amount of money in your bank account
- The way you look and the number on the scale
- Where you work and what you have accomplished
- How many people know you or how many “followers” you have
Low self-esteem originates from using the world as the yardstick to measure our worth.
As believers, we need to examine how God defines our value.
But how does God determine our worth?
You were made in the image of God, so you have value. Period.
You were so important to God that He sacrificed His son for you! God made a way for us to be reconciled with Him because He values us.
When you spend time listening to the truth by reading the Bible or engaging in prayer, you stop determining your worth the way the world does, and you start to determine your worth the way God does.
When you start to do that, your feelings of insecurity will diminish.
Feelings start as thoughts. They come from your mindset. You do not feel insecure because of your bank account, physical appearance, career, popularity, etc. You feel insecure because of the thoughts you have about those circumstances.
As you spend time praying and reading the Bible, though, your thoughts will change. You’ll be trading your thoughts for God’s thoughts.
Robert Murray M’Cheyne (the 19th-century Scottish pastor) wrote, “For every look at yourself, take 10 looks at Christ.”
Of course, we do look at ourselves. We see our flaws. Yet, every time we do, we need to look ten times at what God has to say about us. Trust what God says about you.
The cure for low self-esteem
The cure for low self-esteem is the Gospel. The Gospel will transform your identity and self-worth.
That is what this podcast, The Renewed Mind, is all about. Just like it says in Romans, we will be transformed by the renewing of our minds. That means that the more we renew our minds by reading the Bible, the more our lives will be transformed. Curing low self-esteem must start with renewing our minds.
The world will tell you to keep looking inward to find self-confidence, but we don’t live the way the world does.
Worldly life coaches and inspirational speakers will tell you to look inward for self-confidence, but that doesn’t work. When we try to find confidence that way, the only confidence we find is based on us. Talk about a shaky foundation. I’m so thankful that I don’t have to live the way the world does.
Some people might tell you to look outward for confidence. They tell you to take note of everything you’ve done well and focus on your strengths. They want you to observe your accomplishments and use them as a foundation for your confidence. That doesn’t work. Oftentimes, we don’t have any control over our outward circumstances.
Last year is a perfect example of this. The world turned upside-down in 2020, and many people faced circumstances that they had not asked for and could not change.
Please hear my heart. I know what it’s like to struggle with low self-esteem. I know the feeling of being stuck on a hamster wheel, trapped in an endless cycle of never feeling like you are enough.
Here is the cure: Do not look inward or outward, but instead look upward.
The Beauty of God-confidence
When we base our confidence and our esteem on ourselves, it will collapse when we fail, which is inevitable. The Bible says that we have all fallen short.
When we base our confidence on the Lord, we’re standing on a solid foundation. That confidence will never be shaken because He is the immovable God.
When we determine our worth based on what God says about us, it will transform our lives.
I already know that I will be receiving emails from women telling me that they don’t have a choice when it comes to their self-esteem, but please remember that it is not your circumstances that affect your self-esteem directly. Your thoughts about your circumstances, however, affect everything.
At the end of the day, you need to know this: You were made in the image of God, so you have value.
Walking in Confidence: Knowing Who You are in Christ
When you decide to let go of how the world sees worth and look at how God determines your worth, you will be able to live confidently. You will be able to go after your dreams and your goals because you will not be held back by insecurity.
Knowing who you are in Christ brings so much joy to your Christian walk because you realize that you don’t have to do anything to have worth in His eyes.
The way you serve God will change. Instead of volunteering at church, doing good deeds, and going on mission trips to earn your worth, you will do those things out of gratitude towards God. You don’t have to make Him like you. You have the security of knowing that you are already worth everything to Him.
This confidence starts in your walk with the Lord, but it ripples out to every aspect of your life. That’s why I love coaching women and showing them that confidence is attainable. I love revealing myths such as the belief that we have to be insecure to be humble. When our confidence is in God, we can be humble and confident at the same time because our confidence isn’t in ourselves. We realize that our confidence has everything to do with God and very little to do with us.
There is something so freeing about that.
If you take away only one thing, take away this: if you truly want confidence, then you have to stop defining your worth the way the world does. Instead, start living with God-confidence by seeing your worth the way He does.
I started this by telling you that you are not alone. The majority of Christian women struggle with low self-esteem. Some women look like they have it all together on the outside, but on the inside, they are still trying to earn their worth through accomplishments and good deeds.
The hard part about living that way, though, is that you have to wake up every morning and do it again. You never reach a point when you feel like you have done enough.
But when you see your worth through God’s eyes, you go about your life working for the Lord out of joy rather than obligation.
Confidence is available to you. If confidence is something you have been struggling with, I would encourage you to go through the Walking in Confidence Bible Study. It will change your life if you let it. It’s 21 days of verses that will speak into your life and give you confidence that is unshakeable.