Theology Thursday: Missional Calling: Trusting God With My Insecurities

God showing confidence in you

Living in a culture where social status is measured in likes, clicks and follows, it’s hard not to feel insignificant. Some days, it feels like every system is built to amplify our insecurities. Odds are, you and I will never publish a New York Times best-selling book, make a hit movie seen by millions, sing before a crowd of 100,000 adoring fans, or create a viral post that catapults us to glory. The fact is, by most modern standards, you and I are destined to live a life of obscurity.

Now, I realize this all sounds harsh, but don’t tune me out just yet. Maybe, just maybe, the call of fame was never anything more than a sad illusion. Ecclesiastes 5:10 reminds us of a basic truth found in every culture: “He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves wealth with his income; this also is vanity.” We could probably add to that verse, “He who loves fame will not be satisfied with fame; he who loves glory will find insecurity.” When we consider the wisdom of Scripture today, maybe the hunger for social status does nothing more than starve our souls and feed our self-doubt.

Now for some good news. God’s missional calling offers us something far more satisfying than fame. So, for just a moment, set aside the distraction of becoming an influencer and consider the call God has placed on your life and mine to live on mission. What is our missional calling? Every Christian is called by God to go and make disciples. And the Apostle Paul, in 2 Corinthians 10:7–18, lays out for us the stability we find when we trust God to live on a mission. Let me unpack that passage and offer three takeaways.

In This Article:

Take Confidence in Your Calling, Not the Crowds

It seems that in every culture there is a temptation to measure success based on the number of followers. Even before social media, there were Christians who pointed to their disciples as proof that God had a “superior” call on their life. “Look at my hundreds of followers; you only have five.” Against such thinking, the Apostle Paul reassured the church that “when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding (v. 12).”

The Christians in the city of Corinth felt diminished by certain leaders who played on their insecurities. These leaders used their growing influence to make everyone else feel average. But Paul helped them realize the truth that was right before their eyes, “If anyone is confident that he is Christ’s, let him remind himself that just as he is Christ’s, so also are we (v.7).” In other words, we are all equal at the foot of the cross. When you put your trust in God, the impulse to measure success against the achievement of another person no longer consumes your thinking. All the glory belongs to Christ. As Paul reminds us, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord (v. 17).” For the Christian, our confidence is in our calling and not in the crowds.

Calling Measures Fruit, Not Followers

Today, far too many people are fixated on becoming influencers. Even in the church, our magazines are consumed with celebrating the biggest churches or the ones that are growing the fastest. But across the spectrum, few seem to ask the question, "What is the fruit of this influence?" Paul confronted this very problem among certain Corinthian influencers who boasted of their abilities to grow their following. Paul encouraged the people to stop counting followers and to focus on the fruit of their relationships.

The legacy of your missional calling is not determined by how many people know you, but by the fruit of the lives of the men and women you disciple. If your disciples are arrogant, that is your legacy. If your congregation is known for its love and service, that is your resume. Paul says it this way, "But we will not boast beyond limits, but will boast only with regard to the area of influence God assigned to us, to reach even to you (v. 13).” Think about it this way, who are the people that made the biggest impact on your life? As I look back on my own life, none of them are famous. And the real fruit of my life is the result of someone else's investment of time, energy and love.

Trusting in God’s Calling Feeds Your Soul

I am convinced that the real meaning of our missional calling comes out of the relationships we maintain on a day-to-day basis. Purpose, value and impact are determined by the people with whom we share our hearts and hold hands. A person can have great fame and wealth, but rarely does that translate into having a lasting impact. Have you given in to your insecurities to pursue the approval of the world? Have you trusted God and done something today that will change a life? Do you take pride in your influence, or pride in God's call to live on a mission?

The more I think about it, living a life of cultural insignificance is the best way to find fulfillment and to make a lasting difference. God created you and called you to be something more than significant; you were created for insignificance! As Napoleon Bonaparte observed, "Glory is fleeting, but obscurity is forever.”1 And as a Christian living in a world that fosters false hope in fame, obscurity is probably a good thing. Trusting in the call of fame breeds insecurity; trusting in the call of God breeds confidence. Living on a mission for God starves your insecurities and feeds your soul.


1 Miller, Dr. J.R. (2001) Tweetable Quotes: A Randomized Collection of Inspirational and Humorous Thoughts. Emerging Life Resources.


Approved by faculty of the College of Theology on April 28, 2023.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University. Any sources cited were accurate as of the publish date.