“I have confidence, in Christ, inside of me.”
About twenty-five years ago, I received a prophetic word addressing how I doubted myself after speaking. I would beat myself up, worrying that I had spoken too soon, or been foolish in what I said or how I said it. The word I received said that I hadn’t been foolish or spoken too soon, but that God was going to be building me up on the inside so that I would say,
“I have confidence in Christ inside of me.”
I held onto that sentence. I repeated it when I sank into depression or had to face any of the many challenges that Doug and I experienced in life. For many years, it was my lifeline, reminding me of Christ in me, the hope of something glorious. It was my promise that I was not yet what I would be.
I’ve come to realize that the promise is multi-faceted. It started with me having to accept that when I thought God gave me something to say to someone, I needed to trust that even if I were mistaken in whether it was his prompting or not, I needed to just say it. Another part of that prophecy was that I was to be an encourager, so that’s how God helped me break through doubting every word I spoke. I just started speaking the encouraging, uplifting things that came into my head for people. Strangers aren’t safe from encouragement from me!
I became supremely confident in Christ in me when in spiritual warfare. Believe me, Doug and I saw many serious spiritual battles. Through that, I came to a place of never doubting God’s sovereign rule and authority. Satan is not God’s nemesis! He is not God’s evil twin. He isn’t even equal to us! Another part of that prophecy was that Doug and I had, “…a marriage made in heaven… overcoming every demon in hell.” We didn’t have to fight every single one, but because of the confidence I have in Christ inside of me, I know I could!
I learned that the confidence I had simply must be in Christ. It couldn’t be in man, or the church, or leaders, or anyone but Christ. It HAD to be in Christ. When God took us in directions that no one else was going, I had to hang onto him, and him alone. I am incredibly grateful that he took us to the places he did. I have a kind of trust and confidence in him I could not have imagined was possible. It’s unbelievably freeing to strip away the box that man has put God into to keep him understandable and manageable. The thing is, it’s not freeing for God, because he was never in the box. We’re the ones who need to open the box and let God be God, whatever that means to our doctrine and traditions.
I’ve struggled with trusting in God’s opinion of me and in financial freedom, because the two were linked. For many years, I felt that God loved me, but he didn’t really like me much. It felt like he blessed his other kids and gave them gifts, but his feeling toward me was basically, “meh.” I wrestled with the thought that his plan for me was to learn to live with emotional and physical pain, poverty, and rejection; enduring all with grace, to be an example of how to be a good little Christian. I no longer believe that, but I also can’t seem to grasp the truth that God’s plan includes changing my financial state. I know it, but I don’t have confidence in it. I learned to relinquish self-serving control a long time ago. I know that I wasn’t meant to remain in poverty. He assured me of that. But I couldn’t grasp that it could happen. For the thirty-plus years of my adult life, I haven’t experienced more than two consecutive months of being financially okay; of paying all the bills and having grocery money. I’m not exaggerating. That was our life. Since losing Doug, God has covered us through the generosity of wonderful people and all our household being employed. Even with miracles, I couldn’t grasp the Truth that my financial freedom was going to be a reality. I’ve lived with that fear for so long that I can’t seem to shake it off.
As I woke up this morning, God was walking me through some thoughts when the Truth hit me in my gut. I have confidence in Christ, inside of me! That confidence in his love for me, his plan for me, his excitement over all he’s doing and is going to do in my life… I have that confidence inside me already! I can say, I have confidence—in Christ—in the fact that he is who he says he is. We’ll sometimes see a strong character in books and movies, who is that steadfast, unchanging friend and mentor who anchors the hero of the story. Like a Samwise Gamgee/Gandolf the White perfect mix, Christ inside me is that confidante and caring mentor. I can have the same deep knowing that he is the unfolding of his own promises to me, as powerfully as I know that I have authority over every demon of hell because of who he is for me!
I’m levelling up! He promised, I fought the good fight to believe for those promises, and now I feel as if I’m about to enter the biggest open space in God that I’ve ever experienced. I’m walking through a new door into the land of promise, and it’s way more than just comfort and ease. It’s a place of adventure and excitement and more worlds to conquer.
I’m going to get revenge for all the years of suffering. I walked side-by-side with Doug, holding his hand, suffering along with his pain, so I’m going to get revenge for him, too! You might argue that, “’Vengeance is mine,’ says the Lord.” That’s because his idea of vengeance is far above ours, and he wants us to learn how to get real vengeance. In God’s version of vengeance, I get free, then I get to take from the enemy others who are under his grasp in the very same areas that I was.
I have this confidence in Christ inside me that he is my good friend and confidante. I have confidence in Christ inside me that I will hold out a hand to bring others into freedom. I’ll become what I deeply desire—one who says, “Come this way! I’ve found the One who broke open my shackles, the very same shackles you’re wearing right now! He will be your freedom. He will be the confidence inside you!”