Insecurity may be one of the most insidious vices that lurks deep within, and which dictates much of what we do. I say this as someone who genuinely brawls with the temptation of insecurity quite often. It’s a subtle, almost camouflaged paradigm of seeing yourself that dictates how you interact with your own thoughts as well as others. Its grip latches on, forcing its poison ever so slowly in your mind, gradually changing the way you see yourself and the way you see others.
You begin seeing yourself in a way that becomes the new normal, a distorted view of what it means to bear the image of God. Part of embodying the image of God is to see oneself as being made in the image of God. It is to prevent the distortion of seeing oneself as less than an image bearer. Insecurity then can easily twist how one sees their neighbor. Combatting insecurity, when done in the flesh, seeks to belittle in order to feel safe and secure. We make up stories, over exaggerate facts, look for faults in someone else, and even retreat from community so as to not be faced with the presence of other people in order to avoid comparing yourself, ultimately resulting in a further sense of insecurity. In the words of Theodore Roosevelt, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” When we compare ourselves to others, it can easily lead to a desire to have been made differently, to bear a different image, one of man and not God.
Christ calls us to love our neighbor as ourselves, not judge them as we judge ourselves. It is in Christ’s love that we see ourselves properly and, in turn, see others as Christ sees them. I have come to realize that the best way to combat the lingering temptation of insecurity is through constant prayer, asking the Spirit to guide my thoughts towards Christ and who I am in Him. In addition, seeking opportunities to encourage others in their walk and in how they are uniquely made in Christ is another way to combat insecurity. Ultimately, the former prompts us to recognize that we cannot change our own hearts and that we need the working of the Spirit; the latter is an opportunity to participate in the kingdom of Christ. While insecurity is a subtle, hideous vice that seeks to change us from the inside out, resulting in a distorted view of ourselves, others, and the world, the resurrection of Christ makes all things new. Therefore, let us have a renewed vision of ourselves, others, and the world through the paradigm of the resurrection.