Boldly Belong

Some days we need a suit of armor to protect us in our workplace battles. Women often juggle performance scrutiny, gender inequities, and heightened competition as we navigate workplace dynamics and advancement opportunities. Many of us live behind a mask so co-workers won’t know too much or get too close. Yet we continually assess those around us. And something debilitating takes over when we compare ourselves to others and seek approval.

It’s called Imposter Syndrome: the overwhelming sense that––without our mask––we’re nothing more than an imposter at work or in life. 

Imposter Syndrome wilts our confidence and feeds these lies: “You don’t belong here. You’re not good enough. You’re nobody. You don’t have what it takes. No one cares about you.”

Many years ago, a working mom-to-be suffered with Imposter Syndrome. Her name was Hagar (Gen 16:1–16). While the cultural and social contexts of the story fan flames of injustice and mourning, the foundational truth stands firm: God see us. In the midst of challenge and heartache and uncertainty, God sees you. The one and only God who created the heavens, earth, and everything in them also created you. He knows you intimately. He lovingly created you with specific talents and passions for specific purpose in this season of life. And he’s calling your name.

Hagar hated her circumstances so much that she ran away. But when she encountered God, she engaged in two-way, prayerful conversation with him. She experienced his grace and comfort. She believed him. And she gave God the name El Roi, meaning “God sees me.” 

The only person (man or woman) in all of Scripture to give God a name is this runaway, pregnant, Egyptian slave girl––an outsider and “nobody” by all standards of her day. Through her encounter with God, Hagar shut down the lies. And instead, Hagar believed God who says: “I see you. I love you. I’m calling you to this place. I created you for purpose. I will be with you always.”  

Friends, our unchanging Lord wants us to build the foundation of our faith and our daily work on these same truths. Jesus sees you. Jesus loves you. Jesus has called and equipped you for your work. Jesus has created you with specific purpose for this season (Eph 2:10). Jesus will be with you always (Heb 13:5, 8)

You belong in the sisterhood of Christ-followers. And you belong as Christ’s light-bearer in your workplace mission field. So with faith-shields interlocked, let’s boldly step into who God created us to be. 

Join together with working women across the country as we breakthrough boldly, belong boldly, and believe boldly. How? Check out boldlyconference.com.

Let’s pray. Almighty God, thank you for seeing us and loving us, even when the darkness of isolation and doubt creep in. Jesus, you alone are the immovable Rock we need as our firm foundation. Thank you that you love us perfectly and your love never changes. Holy Spirit, grant us strength day-by-day to silence lies and remember that we belong with you and the sisterhood of believers. Amen.

Dr. Joy Dahl is a Jesus girl transformed by God’s grace. Through many trials she has learned to rise above the depths of real life by holding fast to truth and hope. Today Joy passionately helps believers embrace their calling as Christ’s ambassadors in the world. As a CPA and a Chief Financial Officer by trade, Joy has focused most of her career on start-up and high-growth companies in Washington DC, New York, and Texas. Joy earned three degrees from Dallas Theological Seminary: Master of Christian Education, Master of Biblical Studies, and Doctor of Ministry. Joy is the visionary behind the BOLDLY Conference (www.boldlyconference.com)––the first-of-it’s kind Faith + Work for Women Conference. Integration of faith and work remains the foundation and emphasis of her work and teaching. Joy and her husband, Gordon, call Dallas home. Joy’s favorite things include: God’s Word, international travel, dark chocolate, horses, flowers, beach getaways, running, big dogs, and adventure!

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