There’s a time and place for quiet confidence, but I think that last piece is often missing from the equation. Are we quiet out of fear, or security? This makes a huge difference.
I was recently at a book group. I can’t stand the book we’re going through, and probably won’t read the rest of it, but I have friends there I want to support. What was interesting though, was that every time we meet, I sit there silently. It’s common that I’m quiet in groups, but this one is especially bad.
People talked about their families, things I fear I will never have. In the past I would dissolve into a bucket of tears unable to articulate any of the intense and complicated emotions that would rush through my soul. But this time. This time I was silent.
I was able to recognize the pain, the loss, and also able to hold it together (without even feeling those overwhelming emotions urging me to cry), because I realized that I’ve healed enough that those wounds no longer cut as deep. Sure, things still hurt, but God’s brought me to a place of acceptance, and not only that, but a new kind of hope, that He still has plans for me. That somehow, I still have value.
And so I didn’t speak. And through this group I’ve noticed a difference in myself. As I’ve remained silent out of the confidence within me, rather than the fear, that confidence has grown. I no longer (at least in that group) feel the fear I used to feel, urging me to speak, to share, to say anything because everyone else is expecting it.
There have been comments from others about my silence, but I’m actually ok with that. I don’t feel insecure about it like I often do when I’m quiet in groups and the comparisons and shame (for introversion and inability to share) piles up.
So today I’m feeling thankful. For the ways that God has grown me, and the ways that He has healed me. I know it isn’t finished yet and I have a long way to go, but it brings hope to my heart that I see Him working in me, that I have this very real and tangible example of where I was verses where I am today.