The Confidence To Start Over

"Reverence for the Lord gives confidence and security to a man and his family." (Proverbs 14:26 GNB)

At its core, confidence is a spiritual problem. There's plenty of phony advice in the world about how to gain confidence. Yet none of it works. The secret to confidence is to get in tune with God every day.

The Bible says, "Reverence for the Lord gives confidence and security to a man and his family" (Proverbs 14:26 GNB).

You can see this in the lives of the disciples. They had been shaken by a lack of confidence following the Crucifixion. Their burgeoning movement had failed. They were tired, and they were afraid.

Then they met a resurrected Christ.

The Bible says in Acts 4:13: "The members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus" (NLT).

The disciples didn't have doctorates. They were just common, ordinary people — but they were bold. Before the Resurrection, they cowered in fear in a room with the doors locked. Then, a few days later, they were back out on the streets and taking on the opposition. What happened?

They had been with Jesus. They didn't just know he was alive; they had a relationship with him.

Are you aware that God is always with you? You lose your fear when God is near. God said "I will never leave you; I will never abandon you" (Hebrews 13:5b NCV). That gives you confidence to start over when life seems hopeless.

I'm not really a handy guy, but when I was a kid, I built a table. I polished it and shined it up, but it was a mess. I had ruined a beautiful piece of redwood. One day my dad came in and said, "Son, I have another piece out in the barn. You can start over, and this time I'll help you." Do you think that motivated me? Do you think I had confidence? You better believe it! And, the new table looked great when it was done.

That's what your heavenly Father wants to say to you: "You messed up your life? OK. You can start over. This time I'm going to help you."

That's the good news in what Jesus did for you when he rose from the grave. In fact, it's the best news ever.

Talk About It

  • How have you let your past experiences and mistakes undermine your confidence?
  • Are you aware that God is always with you? How is that evidenced in the way you live your life?

 

Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., one of America's largest and most influential churches. Rick is author of the New York Times bestseller "The Purpose Driven Life." His book, "The Purpose Driven Church," was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also the founder of Pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.

This devotional © 2012 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.


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