Providence? Self-Esteem?

1. I’m studying for my rabbinics comp, which I’ll be taking tomorrow, and, lo and behold, James McGrath has a link by Simon Holloway on “The Development of the Halakha.” Coincidence, or divine providence?

2. I’m listening to Joel Osteen right now, and he’s talking about how we should carry ourselves with confidence. I do this better now than I did in the past. My voice doesn’t tremble as much when I’m in people’s presence, and I look people in the eye more often. But I still tend to mumble, rather than speaking to others in a clear, audible voice. People still say “What?” after I speak. Also, there are some groups in which I am comfortable, and some groups in which I’m not, and I tend not to manifest confidence in the latter situations. My twelve-step group helps me to have more confidence than I used to have. Because I go to a meeting most mornings, I feel a little more confidence around people in the afternoon. It’s like I’ve been gently eased into the day through my meeting. And the meetings are positive. I generally leave them with hope rather than despair.

Joel is speaking against the attitude of apologizing for one’s existence. I often have this sort of attitude. But I don’t know how I can believe that I’m fun to be around, when there have been people who have disliked me. I don’t know how I can believe that I’m competent in job situations, when there are job situations in which I wasn’t competent. Something I really like about my library job is that I do most things right, however. But the battle to have self-esteem is still a challenge.

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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