Fearless and Confident
The four of us were hunched under a dim light looming over the table. Beers were in hand and the conversation was electric as we recalled distant memories of one another.
I met Josh and Tara Bruce while on the World Race in 2008. We spent some time in Thailand and Vietnam together before going our separate ways. Since they both live just outside Atlanta now, we’ve reconnected in some cool ways.
“You were the most fearless person I had ever met,” Tara said, “and I wanted to be like that. I had never known anybody else who was so fearless when it came to spiritual darkness and so sure in who they were in God.”
She was talking about me and I couldn’t believe it; in many ways I didn’t want to hear it.
I had fallen so completely out of touch with that man.
Fearless? Undeterred by spiritual darkness? Confidence in God?
What did I do with that man?
Displaced by Fear
Have you ever misplaced yourself?
What I mean by that is: have you ever forgotten who you are and what really defines you?
I think the problem started when I wanted to be like other people, when I wanted the things they had, things like jobs that paid actual money, cars, new clothes, the latest technology, money to travel, etc.
Instead of living from an identity, I tried to live for one.
What I ended up doing was trading my confidence in God into a never-ending “validation quest” from others.
So my confidence was no longer measured by what God says about me; it was determined by what others thought about me.
Instead of being fearless I became fearfull (yes, I spelled it that way on purpose).
The smallest approval or disapproval from others, a passing comment of “why are you wearing that?” or so on and so forth had the power to make or break me as a person and the direction I was headed in.
I was no longer being shaped by what God sings over me every single day.
What mattered most was what “they” thought, what “they” said.
Being fearfull crippled me from being fearless and confident.
Declaring Fearlessness and Confidence
But I’m thankful for friends who speak into who we really are.
Tara’s words were more than a reminder to me the other night. They were more than a distant memory of the man I used to be.
They were prophetic, they were empowering — it was like drinking revelation from a fire hose!
They were words about WHO I HAVE BEEN ALL ALONG.
Tara and Merridith both called out the fearlessness of who I was that night and it helped me remember that fearless, confident man never died, never left, and was never misplaced.
He’s been right here the whole time.