There are three fundamentals to having Christian confidence. Without any of them, you don’t have it, merely a shell or a caricature of it.
1. You, of yourself, have no real value. You are dirt that God breathed into and decided to love. Your accomplishments, good deeds, sacrifices, possessions, abilities, and even works for God don’t make you any more valuable to Him. Likewise, your failures, sins, fears, and struggles don’t make you less valuable. He doesn’t look at whether you’re attractive or ugly, rich or poor, important in the world’s eyes or not. He sees your heart and, if you’re a Christian, He sees His incredibly beloved son or daughter, made righteous through Jesus’ sacrifice.
You cannot, in any way, earn even a shred of value from Him, neither can you lose any. You are worth His Son’s death to Him, simply because He loves you. The cross is a big enough place for all of us to come and kneel, but there is no room for pride or ego there.
2. There is no position higher than what He is offering you for free. Anything you gain on earth is like Bill Gates finding a dirty penny on the street: so completely not worth his time or effort because of how little it increases his wealth. Likewise, because it is free and not dependent on anything you do, you can’t sink so low that He won’t offer you this new identity or that you can lose it. It’s yours for the taking and there is nothing better on this earth.
3. To fully grasp it, you must know the Father. This is the crux of this post. Imagine for a moment that a stranger tells you you’re special. You may say thank you, but it’s kind of a weird compliment because he doesn’t know you. If he were to insult you instead, you might be offended, but you’d probably brush it off because he’s just a stranger. For his opinion to matter, he’d have to know you and you’d have to know him.
Many Christians don’t really know God on a deep, personal level. They have misconceptions about His character, His heart, and His love for them. A lot of us forget how powerful He is and so we don’t have a healthy fear of Him. We don’t read Psalm 56:8, which tells us that He doesn’t just love humanity in general, but each of us individually more passionately than the most ardent spouse ever could. We see Him as a willing Executioner, Peace-loving Hippie, Cosmic Vending Machine, Spare Tire, or something else. Even when we see part of Him correctly, such as Judge, High Priest, or King, we caricaturize Him as that rather than seeing the complete picture: that He’s these three things and so much more because He is our Father.
I don’t know the relationship you had with your father. It might be really close. Maybe it’s distant or rocky. Maybe you never even met him. What I do know is that nobody wants to be closer to you than God. Nobody loves you more or thinks better things about you. Nobody wants your best more than He does or is willing to sacrifice more for you.
And nobody else’s opinion of you is nearly as permanent and unwavering as His is.
Getting your identity from who you are to God requires that you know God, as He truly is, on a deep, personal level. Once you do, though, you’ll be able to accept that you are His son or daughter, simply because He loves you, and you’ll rush into His arms like a five-year old child when their daddy comes home.