This past weekend I was at a retreat that was FULL of incredibly gifted artists. My chosen art form for the weekend was photography, but there was also dance, music, painting, spoken word, and fashion. Most of the participants were between the ages of 20 and 30; I am nearly 40.
One of my greatest learnings over the weekend was the dichotomy of confidence between these young leaders and myself.
On one hand, these young artists were so talented, but simultaneously many of them lacked any confidence in their giftedness. On the other hand, I am really untalented in the art of photography, but I exuded confidence.
I began to wonder … what causes me to be so confident, arguably irrationally confident, even in the midst of my mediocre talent?
I had to go back to my previous successes in life. For instance, from an early age I experienced great success in sports. I think that my success in sports created a confidence that I have later transferred to church planting, marriage, leadership, writing, speaking, and most recently photography at the weekend retreat. I think my early success created confidence that is portable.
Realizing this my mind immediately went to my children / our children.
Maybe one of the greatest things we can do for our children the children in our ministries is to celebrate their successes – any successes. Even if they are not succeeding in an area that we wish they would! Even if the success seems insignificant or irrelevant. Celebrate it!
Someday this seemingly irrelevant success in one area will become portable and create confidence in another area that really matters.
Funny how being good at sports in junior high can also make me a “great” photographer at 40!