I grew up insecure.
My family was not too well-to-do. Until I was about 12 years old, my sister, mom and I used to put up in the same bedroom – after which my bedroom would be the living room for the next 15 years.
Growing up from the ages of 4 to 7 years, I used to have many soft toys, and I would always form a wall of soft-toys as a border for the mattress. Like most children I was afraid of silly things, but the softness and comfort of a trusty old mattress made me feel that much safer.
That was the first thing I found security in as a child. It’s also where I think I began my pursuit of comfort and self-validation – identity.
The insecurity manifested itself in many ways.
According to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, I am an ENTP. ENTPs are often labelled as debaters. So when it came to knowledge, I took great pride in being right. Being right made me feel at ease.
I am an Asian, and to top it off, I am a Singaporean. So “face” was incredibly important to me – to look good, be seen as good … to be really good. Online, the more people who liked and shared my posts, the more pleasant I feel about myself.
I thought security was about some assuredness within ourselves, that we ought to feel very good about ourselves or something. For a long time I believed that in order to be very secure, I needed everything to go my way – with me at the very centre.
But in the 9 years after I came to Christ, I found that I was advised over and over again that as a Christian, my security was now in Christ Jesus.
Your security lies in Jesus.
Like many Christian jargon, this piece of advice sounded beautiful and holy, but I think not many truly appreciated what it means. The closest explanation I heard relegated my whole insecurity struggle to an identity issue: “Your identity is now in Christ, so your heart is now secured, and you should be less affected by things like recognition and praises.”
Unsatisfied, I meditated on what security in Christ means, finally finding peace when I read a particular verse.
“For does not my house stand so with God? For he has made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and secure. For will he not cause to prosper all my help and my desire?” (2 Samuel 23:5)
I believe security is about an inner assurance (settlement, certainty, protection) from insecurities (fears, worries, suspicions, uncertainties). It is a state of the heart, when it is yielded and surrendered to God.
Security fixes our eyes on the Almighty God, instead of inferior principalities. Security talks about the faithfulness of God instead of the power of men (even through Christ). Security flows from rest instead of performance or reciprocation.
Security looks like surrendered arms, palms opened. It’s like the posture of the three young men: “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up” (Daniel 3:17-18).
Security is found in God’s character – not His gifts or our past experiences. He is the true and living God, in Him alone is true security.