The Shaky Ground You May Be Standing On


Do you base your worth and strength on what others say and think about you? If you do, that’s shaky ground.

When you find what you’re looking for, will it be enough?

There’s a young woman. A young woman who grew up with lots of love from her family and lots of truth about God and the Bible. But as she left home for college, she started to feel like those things weren’t enough. She listened to friends who questioned the truth she was taught. She began to long for more love and more experiences.

She got what she wanted. But the new and different ended up bringing pain and deep sadness. So she tried going back to the things she started with—the love from her family and truth about God and the Bible. But she couldn’t shake the feeling that those things weren’t enough to be the kind of strong woman she wants to be. So now she’s looking to add on. Add on some new truth someone might show her. Add on some good feelings and love from new people. And once again, she’s finding what she’s looking for. But will it be enough? Will this last?

Let’s Figure It Out

When someone notices something you’re good at, it’s a good feeling. When someone compliments you about something you’ve done that is particularly meaningful to you, it’s a good feeling. When someone agrees with something you feel passionate about, it’s a really good feeling. You might gain confidence, conviction, or motivation with those good feelings. You may feel strong.

But what if someone doesn’t notice? Or what if the person that did notice changes their mind? Or never says anything else? Will you be deflated? Will you lose your conviction? Will you be weaker instead of stronger?

While you consider those questions, let’s get to the root of what is being asked:

Do you base your worth and strength on what others say and think about you?

If you do, that’s shaky ground. Really, really shaky ground. While you may have family and friends that encourage you, compliment you, and agree with you, if it’s not based on truth—God’s truth—it will not last. You may feel good, strong, or impassioned for a time. Even a long time. But defining your worth and strength by a person’s opinion will fail.

Here’s what won’t fail . . . grounding your worth in the God who created you. The One who loves you, tells you, and shows you that you have great worth in His eyes.

Matthew 10:29–31 says it this way,

“Aren’t two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them falls to the ground without your Father’s consent. But even the hairs of your head have all been counted. So don’t be afraid therefore; you are worth more than many sparrows.”

Romans 5:8 says,

“But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us!”

We’re Wimps!

If you want to be truly strong—not strong for a while or just “feel” strong—then you have to realize you aren’t strong at all, but you absolutely can be.

That’s why Psalm 73:26 says, “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart, my portion forever.” (Also check out 1 Chronicles 16:11, Psalm 28:7, and Psalm 84:5).

Are you basing your worth and strength on your own thoughts and feelings or on other people? Are those thoughts, feelings, and people’s influence based on truth—God’s truth? Test them as David did in Psalm 139:23, “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my concerns.”

  • Will you be brave and ask God to “test you” in this area?
  • What are some “add ons” you look to to affirm your worth and strength?
  • How does it impact your sense of worth when others don’t compliment or agree with you?

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