We’re all familiar with what insecurity feels like. Whether we choose to acknowledge it or not, this struggle affects each one of us in unique ways. But what causes insecurity? In this post, we’re going to be taking a look at just a few of the factors that the enemy uses to grow insecurity in our hearts.
First of all, rejection is a huge source of insecurity. When love is withheld from us, or we feel as if our opinions, thoughts, and feelings aren’t valued, that’s when insecurity creeps in. When you feel like you don’t have a voice—especially if the rejection you’re facing has taken place over a protracted period of time—this can present an opportunity to entertain thoughts that those individuals may be right about you.
Another big source of insecurity is criticism. Most of us can develop the thick skin to handle constructive forms of criticism—a friend, family member, or colleague whose feedback is clearly intended to grow and benefit us. This is why Proverbs 27:6 says, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend.” When we know the person has our best interests at heart, we can handle their criticism.
However, when you find yourself under relentless, destructive, malicious criticism—particularly from people you don’t really know—those voices will likely build a sense of insecurity in you. It’s not that you’re weak; it’s simply that the voices we hear strongly influence our lives. If we’re not careful, we’ll take what they say and begin to apply it to ourselves as truth.
Here’s a third cause: comparison. Often, we end up comparing ourselves to others throughout each day. It starts when we’re little—kids compare things like toys, friends, birthday cakes…anything, really. Then, as teenagers, we continue this dynamic by comparing grades, sports accomplishments, friends, dates, and so on. Adults are in the same game, just playing with different objects of comparison: jobs, houses, spouses, financial statuses, and so on. We keep comparing. It’s an endless cycle. Why? Because we’re seeking validation, deep down.
No matter what the specific cause of your insecurity, we have to deal with it. We have to make it personal and change our thinking. Why? Because our insecurities are in our minds! Some of you may think, “Yes, I think down on myself; but it’s because, in reality, I’m really not good at certain things.” While that may be true, it’s how we think about ourselves that ultimately results in insecurity. Of course we’re not all talented in the same areas! Of course some of us have more (or less) than others in certain spheres. But it’s all about changing your mindset and seeing yourself the way God sees you.
So…what lies will you put down today? What preconceptions about yourself, and your abilities, have been introduced because of outside voices? Instead of turning to others—or even yourself—for ultimate validation, look to God! He knows you better than anyone, and He created you! There is no doubt about your worth and purpose in His eyes. The more we see ourselves the way He sees us, the more that insecurity within will be silenced.