“With confidence, you have won before you ever started”…Marcus Garvey. As one who struggled with insecurities stemming from an erosion of self-worth, I might have been tempted to take a stab at learning the art of confidence from the 38,757 books offered as such on Amazon. And though I thoroughly enjoy reading, I needed a simpler way to discover being a winner in this thing called life.
I read the Bible story of David being chosen and anointed by the Prophet Samuel followed by his famous battle with Goliath in 1 Samuel chapters 16 and 17. Knowing the outcome of that battle, I was intrigued at David’s boldness. He could have struggled with insecurities too, and yet confidence exudes from him in this passage. Beginning with Jesse, David’s father, David was not considered when Samuel came with the anointing oil. All of his brothers were present, yet David was excluded until God told Samuel that David’s heart designated him as chosen. We then find David’s oldest brother Eliab jealous of the favor on his younger sibling when David obeyed his father by delivering provisions to his brothers and the commander of the unit by how he addressed him in Chapter 17 verse 28. “Now Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spoke to the men. And Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, ‘Why have you come down? And with whom have you left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know your presumption and the evil of your heart, for you have come down to see the battle’.” King Saul dismisses David as a worthy warrior because of his youth and tells him he is not able to fight the massive Philistine. David was the only one willing to fight the giant as the rest of the Israelite army was terrified of the 9 foot man. Goliath taunts David with his bullying threats, curses him, and tells him he plans to give his flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field. So here is David-overlooked by his father, has an angry sibling who is blinded to the truth by jealousy , told by his king he is not able to fight, and is bullied by his opposition. David certainly had grounds to feel worthless and insecure. As the story unfolds, David makes the proclamation that Goliath will be taken down and not just him, but the dead bodies of the Philistine army would be given to the birds of the air and beasts of the field. David’s vision was bigger than Goliath’s because he knew the battle was God’s. God intended to use David’s faith and confidence, not in his own abilities, but in the all powerful One, so that “all the earth may know there is a God in Israel”.
Of the 38,757 confidence books offered on Amazon, my guess is that training and education deals mainly with self-confidence. There may be some merit to what the authors say; however they are limited to what? Self. David’s uncommon confidence was in the God that proved Himself able time and time again, not only in David’s shepherding perils, but in the history of the Jews from their inception by miracles unrestrained by human hands. David focused neither on himself nor on other’s opinions of him, but on God. This uncommon confidence noticed by God catapulted him as the greatest king in Israel, second to Jesus Christ Himself, the King of kings. Uncommon confidence wins.