After years of wearing my hair short, I am growing it out. At times I don’t recognize the woman in the mirror or pictures. Recently while looking at family pictures with one of the girls, I made a negative comment about how my hair looked. My daughter scolded me (in a loving way), “Mom, you always look good. Quit saying that.”
Through her last comment the thought came to me She needs me to be a confident mom. My daughters need me to be past the insecurities of young womanhood. I am her role model and she expects more from me—not in a have-it-all-together way, but an older-woman-who-is-confident-in-her-own-skin way. By not being so, I lose a little credibility and influence with her.
When I look in the mirror before I walk out the door, or when I look at the latest family photos and my first response is “Oh, I look terrible in that picture”, I sow seeds of insecurity in my girls. Insecurity is something that is caught. No matter how often we tell our girls how pretty, smart, talented, or special they are, and no matter how we go on about how much we love them and what a good friend they are, if we don’t show our girls we are comfortable in our own skin, how will they learn to do so?
Mom, doesn’t believe these things about herself so how can I believe them about myself? Mom, if you’re not confident how can I be confident?
A lack of confidence and insecurity leads to a parade of poor decisions.
Confidence leads to
- Better decisions.
- Standing strong for what we know to be true.
- Less self-absorption and more. . .
- Investing in others and caring for others.
- Not being a people-pleaser, less susceptible to peer-pressure.
God did not send Jesus to only save us from hell but live a wimpy life while on earth. He has important stuff for us to do—as the person He made us to be. In 2 Timothy 1:7 Paul gives Timothy a stern reminder to persevere in doing and being what God made him to do. “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.”
In John 10:10 Jesus is talking about us, “I have come so that they may have life, and may have it abundantly” (NET Bible). God has a rich life for us. Let’s not hold back from living it to the fullest worrying about what others think of us.
No, our confidence does not come from our appearance, intelligence, or number of friends. It comes from Who made us and the value He gives us. God made me just like He wanted me—tall, outgoing, red-haired, and enthusiastic about what I’m passionate about.
I’m not saying I should try to appear perfect or like I have it all together. I am saying I need to get over myself. I am authentic with my girls. I share with my girls my struggles. I apologize for my failings with them. I share with them how I’ve handled struggles in the past.
Our confidence gives our girls confidence. When they are confident in who they are and Whose they are, they are more of who God made them to be and less likely to fall for the lies and schemes of the enemy.
We want our daughters to look up to us. We want to be good role models for them. But how can they if we are not comfortable in our own skin?
Our girls learn to do life by watching us. I want to be a good example for my girls. I want to be the older, godly woman who models confidence and trust in God’s love, influence, and involvement in her life.
Yes, I will eventually find a hairstyle that works for me. The process will be a fun and crazy adventure.
But more importantly, when I look at pictures with my girls what I see is me there with them. I am a part of their lives. I have influence in their lives and it’s up to me how I chose to use it.
What does your example say to your kids—confidence or insecurity? I’d love to hear how you live out confidence and trust in the Lord to your kids.
Brenda Garrison is an author and speaker who empowers women with the confidence to live their calling. Brenda is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science Degree in Ministry Leadership with a Concentration in Women’s Ministry at Moody Bible Institute. She and her husband, Gene, are the parents of three young adult daughters and live near Metamora, IL.