Didn’t See It Coming – Insecurity

This message is a part of our Didn’t See It Coming Series.
Find the rest of the messages in this series here.

 Sermon Video

Sermon Audio

Sermon Debrief Audio

(The debrief is a series of podcast episodes on the Faith Church podcast where Pastor Daniel and Pastor Eric discuss the message from Sunday, answer questions, and share stories or interviews that also relate to the message)

Sermon Notes

This past year at the National Association of Free Will Baptists on the morning after the final service, we decided to grab breakfast with my sister and brother-in-law at this small spot near the conference center.
It had been a great meeting, but I was exhausted. I had been so busy helping with stuff behind the scenes and with meetings, I was looking forward to getting back home, so I was in clothes that were chosen for comfort, I looked like I hadn’t slept much in days…

When we get to the restaurant we find that they’re shooting a commercial. I suddenly found my self being very self conscious. I was thinking about the way I was sitting, the way I looked, the way I was eating… I suddenly felt like everyone was watching me, because there was this camera in the restaurant…

The commercial got posted and I think there was 0.3 seconds where Nicole and I could be seen in the background. There was a shot of the kids eating their food, because if you had to choose between including me in the commercial or my kids… no contest on the cuteness scale…

That experience is a good microcosm of insecurity… Insecurity comes on us when we feel like everyone’s looking at us and we fear we don’t measure up…  The truth is, most of the time no ones watching or if they are, they’re not paying attention. Insecurity is a self consciousness of feeling like everyone is watching us…

In the book, Nieuwhoff lays out 5 signs you’re insecure:

  1. You regularly compare yourself to others.

We live in a world that is geared to show us the difference between ourselves and where we could be if we only had the latest toy, the bigger house, the hotter body, the bigger bank account.

Many of us aren’t arrogant, but we struggle with what one counsellor dubbed comparrogance.

“Comparrogance” is arrogance born of our constant comparing.

  1. 1. You regularly compare yourself to others. 2.Your self-worth rests on your latest results.

If you’re driven, you probably want some sort of scoreboard to determine how you are doing, this is something I struggle with- so much of the work that I do is in the unseen…

So when there is a metric, it’s hard for me to not obsess about it…

For you it might be the number on the scale this week, or the size of your bonus, or the time on your latest run or the number of likes on your latest selfie…

  1. You struggle to celebrate the success of others.

When you’re insecure, someone else’s victory or good news is viewed as your loss, if you are constant comparing, you think that means you are farther behind… You’re the kind of person that comments “Must be nice” whenever someone posts a picture on vacation or with their new car…

  1. You edge gifted people out of your life.

If you are constantly comparing and trying to measure up, you’ll eventually elbow yourself into a group of people that you can always be seen as a winner among…

  1. You must have a say in everything.

“I don’t have a question, just more of a comment”

“What will they think of me?” Is the question insecure people always ask themselves.  What we should ask, “What makes you believe people are thinking about you?”

That is how pride and insecurity are linked.

We think others are focused on us. We are worried if they are…

David Anderson

“Insecurity is a reverse form of pride because we assume everyone else is focused on us. THEY AREN’T.”  

Pride and insecurity occupy two sides of the same coin.

-David Anderson

When we ask “What will they think of me?” we are assuming other people are as interested in us as we wish them to be.  

The truth is, most people are not spending that much time thinking about other people. Fear and pride intersect and create insecurity. We believe everyone is thinking about us, and we are scared of what those thoughts may be.

Pride and Insecurity are linked…

Insecurity is the offspring of Pride and Fear.

Pride isn’t just when people are obsessed with themselves, or they’re arrogant, or they brag on themselves all of the time…

Carey Nieuwhoff says there’s a simple test to see if you are a narcissist. Step 1 take a moment and consider yourself.
Step 2… if you made it to step 2 you’re not a narcissist.

A Narcissist is a person who has an excessive interest in or admiration of themselves.

Few people struggle with narcissism,

everyone struggles with pride.

Because everyone struggles with pride, scripture speaks of it all of the time. It’s mentioned in the Old and New Testament, it’s mentioned in all of the genres of scripture…

Most of the principles you know about pride probably come directly from scripture.

Pride cometh before a fall. – Proverbs 16:18

God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble. – James 4:6

Let another man praise thee, and not thine own mouth; a stranger, and not thine own lips. – Proverbs 27:2 

a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. – Galatians 6:3 

Pride is the root of so many other sins, it leads us into so much heartache, trouble, and consequences.

Two of the consequences of Pride is division, reluctance to serve, and unhappiness… For this reason we looked at Philippians 2 in November in our sermon series Joyride. (on our website on our sermon archive page)

It served as a great passage of scripture to prepare our hearts for this transition we find ourselves in the middle of in 2019… The shift to two services would not be possible without the 40 adults and children who are here for both services, serving in one and worshipping in the other…

You’re not making this about yourselves….

Thank You. It’s not about us.

When we looked at this passage a few months back, we were focused on the products of humility of in joy, serving, and unity.

Today, we are going to strike at the heart of the issue and deal directly with pride.

Read Phil 2:3

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

“Let nothing be done through strife of vainglory”

The word here is a compound word of vanity and glory. Empty glory, empty service, empty pride…

Are you familiar with empty calories?

They are calories derived only from solid fats and sugars.

They have calories and nothing else, they have no nutritional value, nothing that your body can use other than to store fat away…

It tastes good, but that’s it.

There’s a lot that is done because it makes us feel good, and that’s it. I’ll serve as long as it makes me feel good, as long as it makes me feel better about myself, after that, I’m done…

So what’s the antidote here?

The antidote to Cynicism was hope.

The antidote to Loneliness was confession and community.

The antidote to Emptiness was sacrifice, giving our selves to Christ.

The antidote to Burnout was rest and purpose.

Whats the antidote to insecurity and pride?

Paul gives us that in the rest of the verse and the next verse…

3b. of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

4Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.

The antidote to insecurity is humility.

Only humility can get you out of what pride got you into.

Now I’m afraid that some of you are going down a wrong path in your minds because you think that you know what humility is and you’re wrong.

You think humility is telling yourself that you’re worthless, or you think that humility is beating yourself up, or you think that humility is degrading yourself…

Paul gives us an example to look to, someone that we can model our humility after.

5Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

6Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:

7But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:

8And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

So first off, let’s look at the fact that before Paul tells how Jesus humbled himself, he gives us this qualification that Jesus was quite comfortable with who He is.

He said, he thought it not robbery to be equal with God.

Other translations of this say, he didn’t view equality with as something to be grasped…

The idea here is the Christ was comfortable with who he was, he saw that He is the Son of God and didn’t feel like it was something that had to be clutched onto, he wasn’t worried about losing that status, he wasn’t trying desperately to maintain that appearance…

Impostor syndrome… is a psychological pattern in which an individual doubts their accomplishments and has a persistent internalized fear of being exposed as a “fraud”.

When you know your place in the world, you’re comfortable going wherever the need arises.

Conan Obrien was interviewed by the NY Times and they asked if it bothered him that his show was being cut to 30 minutes down from an hour…


I think you have more of a problem with that than I do. [Laughs.] In this culture? Two years later, it’s going to be, who’s Conan? T

his is going to sound grim, but eventually, all our graves go unattended.

Calvin Coolidge was a pretty popular president. I’ve been to his grave in Vermont. It has the presidential seal on it. Nobody was there.

I had a great conversation with Albert Brooks once.

When I met him for the first time, I was kind of stammering. I said, you make movies, they live on forever. I just do these late-night shows, they get lost, they’re never seen again and who cares?

Albert Brooks responded “What are you talking about? None of it matters.”

No, that’s the secret. In 1940, people said Clark Gable is the face of the 20th Century. Who talks about Clark Gable?

It’s so funny because you’d think that would depress me.

I was walking on air after that.

“Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.”

C. S. Lewis is often credited with this quote, and it is a good summary of his thought in Mere Christianity, however it is not a quote he ever wrote.

In a study in 2013, researcher Queena Hoang proposed that intrinsic motivation can decrease the feelings of being a fraud, that result from impostor phenomenon.

In other words, when you’ve got purpose and calling, it’s not about you, it’s not about you proving your worth, it’s about accomplishing what you’ve been purposed with…

True Humility will get you out of what Pride got you into.
Pride will get you further into what’s got you…

Some of you have spent yourselves into a pit of debt because you’re trying to keep up with the Jones, you’ve got to have as big of a house as they do, as new of a car, as cool of clothes, or just as much stuff, what you didn’t realize is that the Joneses are upside down on their house and behind 2 car payments and maxed out on their credit cards, you picked the wrong horse to keep up with…

Your pride has gotten you into a mess, if you have some humility and live within your means, get into a Dave Ramsey class you could get out of the mess you’re in, but your pride will keep you from admitting you’re in over your head and it will only get worse…

Humility is how Christ got us out of what Pride got us into…

The brokenness of sin that we find ourselves in is the result of Pride… It’s one of Satan’s standard ploys.

When he tempted Eve, he said it will make you as god!

(Eric pointing out the wilderness theme from last week)

When Satan tempted Christ, he tempted him to throw himself off of the pinnacle of the Temple so that everyone would know he was the Christ, everyone would know He was God…

If we do not humble ourselves, we’ll be humiliated.

Humiliation is involuntary humility. – Nieuwhoff

Jesus said, do not take the chief seat, instead take the lowest seat and if you are asked to move to a better seat, it’s an honor.

If you take the best seat and you’re asked to move to the lower seat, it’s humiliation.

You can take the low place and let God lift you up or take the high place and God will take you down.