When I was young, there was one person in particular whom I wanted to impress. I desperately wanted to make them proud of me. I thought that if I could only be good enough, smart enough, and helpful enough that it would prove to them that I was worth loving. I based my value on the opinion of someone who couldn’t seem to see anything except what I was not. A soundtrack of every negative thing they said about me played in my mind. And I started to believe all of it…

I was convinced that I couldn’t do anything well. I was sure that no one would ever truly want to be my friend, let alone love me. Worse, this warped view colored my relationship with God. I may have said aloud that salvation was by grace alone, but deep down, I still believed that I had to be good enough to deserve it. I was one of the most insecure girls you could imagine.

My mistake was becoming so fixated on the opinion of one person, that I forgot the words of Romans 8:1-2 NIV, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.”

Over the years, God has graciously sent scripture, books, people, songs, and so many things into my life that helped me see myself the way that God does. I learned that the biggest key to overcoming insecurities is this:

Base your worth on the fact that you were created in the image of God, and have been redeemed through the blood of Jesus.

“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” – Galatians 5:1 NIV

I spent years living in fear and insecurity. That motivated me to do everything I could to win the approval of my parents, my peers, and God. I was working under the assumption that I had to earn grace, and in doing so, I completely missed the fact that it had already been given to me. I carried around a burden that Jesus had already freed me from. Letting go of that burden allowed me to feel like I could breathe for the first time.

How much of your insecurity is rooted in the idea that you must earn God’s grace? You can’t earn grace, and you don’t need to! Jesus loved you enough, exactly the way you are right now, to die for you. Even more amazing, He came back! He overcame death. If He can do that, then He can free you from your insecurities. God loves you, insecurities and all, but His love means that you don’t have to live with that burden anymore.

“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” – Ephesians 2:10 NIV

When I was a teen, I wanted to change the world. I had big dreams, but all of them involved me helping people. I was called a foolish idealist. I was told that I needed to grow up and face reality. My dreams became smaller and smaller until I just wanted to find a way to get by. That foolish idealist in me never completely gave up. It turns out that God had plans for her, and, in ways both big and small, God has allowed me to help people. That core vision in me never changed, because it was the one that God created me for. Today, my life is quite different from all of those big dreams of mine, but it’s even better.

Does your insecurity hold you back from the amazing things that God has planned for you? When you’re driven by your fear and insecurities, you will do only what you think you must. When you are driven by love, and a passion for God’s plan for your life, then you will do so much more. Find that core vision that God has for you. Seek His plan for you, and when insecurity threatens to hold you back from stepping out in faith, remember that you were created by God for this. If He has called you to something, then it’s because He has prepared this task for you.

I know that when you look in the mirror, it’s too easy to see every flaw and fault. Yet, when God looks at you, he sees a young woman who is loved and cherished. In God’s eyes, you are so very dear.