{Be Confident} Just Dance

Spiritual Growth

I couldn’t help but love this photo… this guy has it goin’ on. 3

When I was in 6th grade, I went to my very first dance.  I watched as all of the boys and girls found partners, and began swaying an arms length a part from each other.  My mom had insisted on coming to the dance with me, and she made it clear that if I wanted to go, she had to go to.

I learned in that moment, that boys don’t ask girls to dance if their mom is hovering over them.  I think mom knew that.  I also think that’s why dad bought me a huge wrist corsage that night.  He knew the night was a big deal for me, and he wanted me to have something pretty to stare at just in case no one asked his little girl to dance.

So there mom and I sat on the sidelines, watching everyone sway.

Little freckle faced Anna spent that night wondering why no one wanted to dance with her.  It was the first time I really felt like I wasn’t good enough.  Out of a sea of 6th graders I was one of the few who didn’t get to dance, and I felt totally insecure.

Insecurity is a word I know well.  And you know what the antidote to insecurity is? Confidence.

You probably saw that one coming.

When momma Wall asked me to blog for Delight she also asked that Id pray over a theme for my writing and a section that it would be featured in.

My objective was to take the very thing that tried to claim years of my life and punch it in the face … In the most classy and Godly way possible.  And Be Confident was born.

That’s what Jesus does- he sets us free. And he doesn’t like it when anything tries chain us down and convince us otherwise.

So here I sit. On a flight from Virginia to Mobile, and I want to offer you some freedom. James 5:16 says that we should confess things to each other. You know why he says that? Because In confessing we vocalize the truth that we don’t want to be chained any longer – we want to be set free.

And sometimes we need to hear ourselves say things.

A handful of you have come to me via our “cyber correspondence” and confessed your fears.  That in itself is a bold move.  Confession builds community. It does us so much good to know we’re not the only one to struggle with something.  One of my favorite authors, CS Lewis, writes:

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And baby girl- you are not the only one.  I like to think we’re all dancing to the tune of life.  Some of us are more experienced dancers than others, but it doesn’t matter because we’re all doing it together. I want community to be cultivated here. I hate that we’re doing this with you at your computer screen and me at mine. It robs is of something really precious, but I can’t help but believe that for now- this is sufficient.

We all struggle differently. We wrestle with things that people don’t see and allow ourselves to believe lies that have claimed far too much valued time.

Insecurity was that thing for me- specially people’s perception of me. It was a thing that claimed far too much valued time.  I realized I didn’t like things about myself only after I noticed that other people didn’t like those things. That’s where insecurity was planted in my heart. Without knowing, I let it grow there because I put my hope in the wrong things-

I would be so much prettier without freckles.
I’d be worthy of a boys attention if I my body wasn’t shaped this way.
If I lose weight I’ll finally be someone that people really see.

That last thought was one that didn’t change when the other did. When I finally started loving my freckles and began to appreciate the person I was growing up to be, something inside me screamed that unless I was skinner all of it wouldn’t matter.

I still remember the first time I thought my thighs were too big. I was in 1st grade, sitting on the carpet ready for story time  when the girl beside me pointed out that my thighs had “extra” than hers when I sat down.

Isn’t it crazy how some things just stick with us?

When you’ve struggled with something your whole life, and finally feel the victory of what it is to overcome that struggle- you can’t help but want that victory for everyone. It’s just natural. I think we psych ourselves out sometimes.  We get this skewed idea that we can handle it ourselves.  Then, gradually, our fears, our insecurities: they define us without us even realizing it.  Until we speak up.  That’s when something in us gains a little courage for change.  But it doesn’t happen all at once, its a progress, a cycle.  We confess, move foreword, step back, confess, move forward, step back, confess.  It’s like a dance, and Jesus just wants to be our partner on the dance floor.

Take it from me- a girl whose favorite past time is dancing in the kitchen- it is much easier to dance when the person you’re dancing with knows what they’re doing.

And Jesus knows what he’s doing.

When we’ve been dancing solo for so long, it’s hard to let someone else lead us.  We get scared in the beginning because we step on toes and look silly.  But, see, fear is a good thing, it reminds us that we are human.  To be fearless would be incredible, but I don’t want to be fearless.  There is something to be said about still having fears, looking them in the face, and living an abundant life in spite of them.

There is something to be said about stepping on toes, but not letting it stop you from dancing to the song.

So here I am. And here you are. I want to encourage you to be the woman that turns her biggest weakness into her biggest strength. I want you to let it be a humble reminder of where you’ve come and be the fuel to propel you forward.

Because that’s that my insecurity and fear of man has done for me.

So, next week, I’m going to share that part of my story with you.  In a world that screams we should hide behind pretty profile pictures and inspiring instagram feeds, I’m gonna let you see past those things, into a part of my heart that not many have seen.  I’m going to show you some of the times when I tried to dance by myself, other times when I stepped on toes, and times when I just wanted to give up and watch everyone else dance, convinced I would never get a turn.

Even as I sit here, in this airport, and think back to those days, I can’t help but smile and cry at the same time.  (I’m pretty sure people are staring, and I’m totally okay with that.)  Liberation is humbling.  Especially when you realize that true liberation is due to nothing that you’ve done and is filled with love.

I also want to reach across this computer screen barrier we’ve got goin’ on here and and bear hug you.  There’s a lot going on in your world, and I want to be a part of it.

Cheers to dancing through life together, and laughing along the way.

(And crying happy tears in airports, that’s special too.)

Xo

Annafilly

 

 


December 3, 2014

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  1. Dawn

    December 3rd, 2014 at 8:49 am

    Hello Annafilly
    I love reading your blogs here they are very inspiring. I can really relate to the one I just Read be confident just dance. but all the ones I read have a really beautiful and helpful message.

    Dawn

  2. anna

    December 3rd, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    You’re so sweet, Dawn. It’s all Jesus <3 I'm so glad you're encouraged by what he's brought me through ;) xo

  3. Allie Rittle

    December 3rd, 2014 at 9:05 am

    This is sooo beautiful! Thank you for sharing your heart! Can’t wait for next week <3

  4. anna

    December 3rd, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    Allie :) Thanks, sweet girl. Me too! xo

  5. Moriah N

    December 3rd, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    Love this so much and you even more! <3 When you shared your 1st grade-flashback, it reminded me of one of my own. A friend of mine had pointed something out about me that wasn't as pretty as her. At first I was hurt, but then out of nowhere, I was confident of who I am in Christ. I said, "That's just how God made me." And in my heart I knew that God had a plan for every ounce of me.
    How I wish I had a little of that confidence left. Multiples moves and years of bullies have left me afraid and almost ashamed of who I am. This week God has really been showing me how to find my identity in Him, and I believe He will give me some confidence :)
    Love you!!!!

  6. anna

    December 5th, 2014 at 11:58 am

    Moriah, you’ve GOT that confidence, beautiful girl! It’s JESUS! Don’t forget whose you are. Lies scream, but in the midst of the screams are Jesus’s whispers of sovereign truth! Hebrews 11 & 12 have been sooooo encouraging for me! Check them out and let me know what you think. xo

  7. Madison

    December 4th, 2014 at 12:00 am

    Oh I’m so excited for these blog posts. Thank you for sharing and for your openness. This year, my word for the year was fearless, and well, it’s SO much easier said than done. I failed a lot. But I feel like God’s been teaching me a lot about confidence. I struggle so much with the fear of man and wanting to please others. This series seems so perfect and just what I need to hear. I wish I could meet you and talk with you face to face, but I’m so glad I can hear from you through this blog. :) <3

  8. anna

    December 5th, 2014 at 11:52 am

    I’m excited too, Madison! Being vulnerable can be so scary sometimes- and facing our fears can be scary too! That’s the beauty of Jesus though. He calls us to trust him in his strength. If this series does anything for your heart- I hope it encourages you in the fact that you’re not alone. We’re all in this together, struggling, learning, growing and seeking! Can’t wait for the day when we DO meet, sweet girl! xo

  9. marcia

    December 5th, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    this section of the blog has quickly become one of my favorites because I struggle so much with insecurities and confidence and how to balance them and somehow your posts are always so spot on to exactly my heart is struggling with.
    so thankful for your voice speaking Truth into my heart through this section of the blog!

  10. anna

    December 5th, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    Marcia :) I’m right there with you, boo. But struggle makes it all worth it you know? Knowing where we’ve been helps us see where God wants to take us. Its so exciting. I’m pumped to see what God continues to do in and through you and SO glad you find encouragement here! xo

  11. Maddie

    December 6th, 2014 at 3:09 am

    Really needed to hear this this morning. Thank you for sharing this truth and also your own story!

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