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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Confident (07/05/07)

TITLE: Memoir in Confidence
By Judith Hope
07/06/07


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Memoir in Confidence

I found my confidence just twelve months ago, it had been long missingÖ and, as often is true with lost things, I found it in a most ordinary and yet unexpected place.

I didnít fully appreciate that it was so badly missing. Having reached a certain ripeness of age, and learned well enough how to manage without the usual degree of confidence in myself and in life. I had settled that it was not my lot to have confidence. It had always been a baffling commodity to me, and most elusive. Something mostly attributed to other people.

Confidence, I once thought, seemed so much an acquired ingredient in people. I did make a sort of study of the subject. And thought, really, that confidence sometimes sprang in the minds of people, from what I could only determine, as based on very little grounds.

Then there was my encounter with a most happy co-worker who had a radiant smile, and was deeply confident in her outlook and this apparently and amazingly to me, to be simply a fact of her existenceÖ Not related to any one aspect or incident in life. It certainly hadnít taken much thought. And it was completely unchanging. This was totally beyond my ken.

I confess, that I even wondered if this level of trust and confidence, might not be similar to that of the very happy state of mental illness that can exist in some souls, who have no apparent connection with the reality around them.
I knew of one such woman, who spent part of her day, wandering the suburban streets, with wafting arms and a flowing gown. She picked and carried flowers, which she strewed around her as she went. To all appearances in a euphoric state, of confidence and happiness.

At one time, I felt sure that confidence came from being excellent in some way. And promptly set out to be so, having actually found some gifted atom in myself. Realizing quickly that this didnít seem to hold up, in any given situation, as oneís chosen quality was not always relevant or particularly appreciated. And, seemed to little equip one for confidence in all things.

Then left, with a sense of futility and dismay, when oneís confidence gained from a good result in one area, ebbed quickly and steadily away, when faced with a challenge in another.

Children often learned to have confidence, at an early age,
I noted. And, made an effort to foster personal confidence in each of mine. Praising, providing and encouraging their natural tendencies and talents. They did have a confidence. Yet, being loved seemed a more important element in this.

So, could I really expect to find confidence at an age when one would imagine that much of this would have been gained, and garnished.

As my life brought me closer to God, and in relationship with Him, I gathered that I could rely on what I called God-Confidence. That was to say, that whilst I may not be confident in myself when approaching an experience, I could trust, that God would be there. And, that there would be results evident of God in my life, if I allowed space for that to happen.

My anxiety started to ease, in this way. My mind started to clear and was open to more searching as to what else this Presence may mean. And, of course, what I found was so natural and obvious, and yet so miraculous.

Over a time of steady growing in faith, I came to feel Godís love for me. And this was a deep and eternal love. This was life changing!

It gave me a confidence and a courage to enter the pain of a psyche damaged in childhood and to move through this to complete healing.

And within this process came the fruits of healing. The glorious knowledge of Godís love, and a deep personal confidence that is wrapped within his gift of love and healing to each of us.

Perhaps, I hope, with a little more wisdom, I have come to sense Godís presence in other lives, and would always want to join others in that confidence we can all share, which is beyond our own.


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This article has been read 588 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Dee Yoder 07/13/07
I think the older I got, the more I realized what God confidence could mean to my life. Maybe the journey through life helps us focus more on where our source of confidence truly is. I like this sentence: "...some gifted atom in myself."
Brenda Welc07/14/07
Well done essay, you made it personal. Blessed writing here.
Beth LaBuff 07/15/07
I really like how you describe confidence here, "I found my confidence just twelve months ago, it had been long missingÖ and, as often is true with lost things, I found it in a most ordinary and yet unexpected place". It reminds me of how the writer of Proverbs describes "wisdom". Thanks for writing this.
Lynda Schultz 07/17/07
I loved this line: "I confess, that I even wondered if this level of trust and confidence, might not be similar to that of the very happy state of mental illness that can exist in some souls, who have no apparent connection with the reality around them." I often thing that these people, as much as we pity them, are so much better off that we are with our hang-ups, worries and fears.
Phyllis Inniss 07/19/07
This is a great article. I like how you moved through accepting your lack of confidence in yourself, yet seeking an 'atom' of it, trying to inculcate it in your children, and then gradually and imperceptibly finding it in the Presence of God. You handled this development in a most interesting way.
joe hodson07/22/07
Great essay! I loved the voice, personality and honesty you brought to the piece.
Anne Linington08/22/07
I realy appreciate the quality of your writing, and encouragement of my efforts. Have you done any non-challenge pieces? I am trying to embrace a more contemplative style of prayer. I don't have the faithwriter's message service, but feel free to e-mail if you would like to: Anne.Linington@tiscali.co.uk
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