When Confidence Falters

June 13, 2022

By Nicole


I admit it. I’m a pretty confident person. But I’ll also admit, I haven’t always been this way. As a kid I was the quiet, nerdy, loner. As a teenager I was the sometimes nerdy, sometimes “fly” Black girl who could dance her butt off in an all white school. But in college, well, I had real friends. And I think that helped me come into more of my true identity.

College certainly was a high time of leadership for me. By Junior year I was catapulted into a variety of leadership roles. My friends were leaders as well. And I think when you’re a leader, you develop a sense of confidence, because you’re in your lane, driving like nobody’s business. Doing what only you can.

Well, I should rephrase that. If you’re a good leader you’re confident. There are plenty of poor leaders out there who aren’t so confident. They are sometimes pretending to be, but deep down inside they know they’re in the wrong lane. Heck. Maybe even in the wrong vehicle.

The thing about confidence is that there is probably a fine line where you can easily veer over into the lane of pride. What is the difference between confidence and pride? I have wondered this the last few days after my confidence shot down a few pegs. I was deeply hurt when someone I highly esteem was (in my opinion) unnecessarily overly critical of my work. How could this be when so many have raved over my gift? How could this be when I know God has called me to this purpose? But it made me question the call.

Am I sure I’m hearing correctly?

Confidence sailed from me like a deflated balloon as I wrestled with these questions the last few days. I haven’t fully rested on an answer as to why this persons’s view minimized my gift, but what has settled in my heart is that there are just some people who are not for you. That is a lesson I seem to have to keep learning over and over in this season. I plow into these budding relationships optimistic, eyes bright with hope, arms wide open. Like the new kid in a new neighborhood, I’m just a tad too eager to make friends. But there are some who don’t want to be your friend. And there are others who aren’t worthy of the honor.

I know one thing though, confidence is needed for the call.

[Tweet “When we are called to something great, we have to be certain about that thing and our ability to achieve it because there are other forces at work that will no doubt oppose us.”] So many celebrities and successful people share the stories where some major boss, or person of prestige and influence tells them flat out in their journey, “You aren’t going to be able to do this.”

Oprah Winfrey was told her hair was too thick for TV until she went and got a perm and all of it fell out. Kevin Hart was told he wasn’t funny in the least and needed to stick to his day job selling shoes. He is now selling out stadiums. And I was told that my novel had none of the five opening traits that a good novel should have. This was a blatant lie, but I don’t even fault the critic. They were perceiving through their lens. But I have to look through His.

One good thing from this disappointing experience is that it brings me back to God. My source. He is the one in charge of my ultimate destiny and I am co-partnering with Him to manifest it. So, if someone makes me feel like I can’t do this, well, I ask Him, “Can I do this?” And you know what He says?

“You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.” (Phil 4:13)

Wow. And then I realize, He is my confidence. And maybe me being knocked down a few pegs does rid me of some hidden pride. But I am once again lifted up in Him and His ability to manifest the very large things that seem to tower over me. Like David I am empowered with the supernatural to take down the giants of the naysayers. You know you have arrived when there are naysayers.

Writing is your destiny. That is a word I received from a woman who has spoken many words of promise over my life that have come to pass. This same woman told me four years prior that I would create a book publishing agency before I actually did. Her daughter was my first client.

Writing is my destiny. But what is a destiny? Admittedly I wondered this when given the word. I can only say now that it is purpose. There is purpose in my writing. So even if I don’t have the technicality of a Toni Morrison or the brilliance of a Stephen King or the knowledge of an Angela Davis. Well. I have the calling of the Almighty. I have the dream of my ancestors. I have the resources, time and provision to drive at 100MPH full force like a NASCAR race car driver on his best day in the lane of purpose.

There is only one moment in time when it is you and it is now, says the great Will Smith. No one before you has ever been created as you and there is no other moment that will be the same as now. When you and “now” collide, what will happen?

Destiny. Purpose. And I have no doubt that we can be confident in these two forces. Because they were curated from the One who curates all things. Who empowers us to conquer all things. Now.

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