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Heart, Beauty, and True Confidence

A Songbird Sings Again

Kechi was the sole survivor of a Nigerian plane crash. She had 3rd degree burns over much of her body including her face.  Her confidence had been robbed by the unfortunate tragedy she suffered. The ability to sing was still there and as fresh as ever but her outer appearance threatened to cover it up forever. I saw past the scarring and tapped into the sweet, talented, intelligent person she was. The problem was she felt others would be put off by her outward appearance. Even worse, she was trapped and stripped of her confidence by the anticipated fickle opinions of others.

Who Sets The Bar For Acceptance Anyway?

In February of 2010 the nonprofit I founded “The Amos House of Faith” was hosting a gala to raise funds to support children and families in the Houston area affected by burn trauma. It is a time when the whole burn community, burn survivors, firefighters, and medical personnel come together to celebrate the success and power of peer support. Kechi was a high school senior and I wanted to give her a platform to display her talent at the event. I remember approaching her and asking if she would grace us with a selection. She titled her head slightly and averted her eyes from me. In a very shy tone she responded “I don’t know”. I didn’t want to push the issue but I desperately wanted to know the reason behind the hesitation. She folded her arms across her abdomen, looked up at me and said in a sad frightened voice, “I don’t know if I can stand before people like this.”

Jump Starting The Confidence of Others

My heart was filled with compassion. I had been in that spot before myself. I reached out and touched her on the shoulder. She looked up at me and a small smile came on her face. I didn’t bother lecturing her about social acceptance issues. All I wanted to do was jump start her confidence. I returned her smile and simply said, “You can do it. Let me know when you make your decision.”

The Rebirth of Confidence

She did make a decision. What we witnessed at the 2010 Bold Brave Believing Hearts Gala brought us all to our feet.  The melodic powerful soul stirring song she sang testified to the inner beauty she possessed. It was her decision born out of heart, beauty, and true confidence. She was the captain and no one was controlling her ship.

The Real You Unveiled

Who we really are is normally buried under visible things such as clothes, friends, status, and superficial beauty. Trauma has a way of stripping you bare, disclosing you for the person that you really are. On March 7, 1999 I found myself lying in a hospital bed owning nothing but my integrity. After the fire destroyed my home and ravished my body, who was I then? I was known to be the lady who loved purple, an enviable homemaker, and confidant. But when I owned nothing, and purple didn’t matter, when I didn’t have the ability to take care of my household and couldn’t shoulder a burden for the life of me, who was I then? Despair screamed I was nothing. Confidence had fled. I had to reach deep to clothe myself.

Confidence – The Missing Link

I find confidence is often the missing piece for many of us in pursuit of a successful life. Many opportunities have slipped our grasp because no one was there to tell us we could do it when in fact we could have told ourselves. There is beauty inside of all of us. It doesn’t matter how many people can see it. Until you are aware, it lies buried and ineffective. True confidence is the confidence that comes from what you personally know to be true. It is a self-assurance that is present and functioning rather the crowd acknowledges it or not. Confidence is the level of belief and assurance you have in something. It comes from within the heart. Know for yourself what you are made of.

Do Something

Refuse to let outside circumstances that are not in your control rob you of confidence. Ask yourself this question:

  • Do I have true confidence or does my assurance come solely from others?

Don’t let your self-worth rest on the precarious slope of others opinions.

Every human has been graced with a gift and talent.

  • Take a few moments out of your busy schedule today and make a list of what you are confident of.
  • On the other side write what you are doing with that knowledge.
  • Make a second list noting the things that loved ones and close friends feel confident about you. Do you feel as confident as them?
  • Next to that write why or why not?
  • Challenge that why not: it will be an exhilarating and liberating experience.

Remember life is most enjoyable when there is heart, beauty and true confidence.

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12 Responses to "Heart, Beauty, and True Confidence"

  1. Richard says:

    A great and inspiring story. Thank you.

    Confidence is instilled often early in life. I am conscious of this with my two your children. As a parent it is my role to build up and prepare my children for the way the Lord wants them to go. As a reuslt I learned a while back that it is crucial I build them up. WHen I do that their confidence flourishes. So…each day throughout the day I speak words of life and encouragement into my kids and their lives.

    Kechi is a gift from God with a gift from God. Each one of is and has the same. THe mroe we use it the more our lives will matter and the more we will be fulfilled because, by doing so, we are adding to the lives of those around us.

  2. James says:

    It is not often that one gets to read something so simple direct and empowering as this. We all need this confidence Mrs. Page speaks of. It is simply wonderful for someone to tell us directly that we can do it and that its ok to believe that we can by divine providence. May God bless us all as we try and fail and try again in our efforts to find purpose and to do his will.

  3. Julia says:

    Very inspiring! Confidence is definitely essential. The more we accept God’s love, the more we can give love. When you feel loved, you feel more confident. Thank God for His encouragers!

  4. Paul says:

    Great story Justina. You really have worked miracles with the Amos House. This story and your story should inspire countless people and show them that any adversity can be overcome with time, caring and dilligence.

  5. Logan Rutherford says:

    A very powerful account. Thank you for sharing this Ms. Page. Keep up the great work you are doing in your community!

  6. Gary says:

    Great story, Kechi was a little shy when she started to sing But her VOICE was alive after a few notes… and she Has a Talent, she just had to have confidents in her self… but once she opened up her talent SHINED…

  7. Lori says:

    Beautifully said! A lack of confidence is often the unseen monster that hinders us from going forth. It was a blessing for Kechi that you gave her an opportunity to face her fears and display her true beauty. Thank you for those words that I too must lay to heart. That is, to refuse to let circumstances that are out of our control to rob us of our confidence!

  8. Lillie says:

    I enjoyed reading such inspiring words of encouragement to Kechi and others like me. I thank God for your testimony and how you can inspire others to look within themselves to find that gift that God has placed in each of us.

  9. Mary says:

    I loved this story, Justina is always an inspiration to all. Just being Justina and fighting through her own battles really inspires me to go for what I know. She is such a good person that once you meet her you will know just what inspired Kechi to go on.

    Such a good blog I can’t wait for the next one.

  10. Dominique says:

    It is great Mrs. Page that you are inspiring others to be strong and live meaningful lives despite tragedy. You know we are all made in God’s image, I once heard a wise man say that we all have a piece of God in us. Thinking on that, I realize that we all have beauty to share. It is sad that far too many people are superficial and focus on what others think instead of being confident in the beauty within that God gives. Confidence in things, people, and outer beauty cannot compare with the confidence that we gain when we allow truth and righteousness to guide our thoughts and shape us into the people we become. Wow, I could not imagine having the strength or will power to move from such painful tragedies as you have experienced, your example shows me that no matter what, I have to triumph and that I should be more appreciative and have confidence despite what blocks my way.

  11. Sergio Valdez says:

    Ms.Page, you are such an inspiration…. I really enjoy seeing you at work when you come talk to the burn victims. They enjoy your words of encouragement and tell me all about you when you leave. There is a positive outlook in them after your visit.

    Have a blessed day Ms.Page.

  12. Deirdra says:

    I was there, and I’ll never forget it! It brings tears to my eyes to think about it. Kechi singing was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever witnessed. I’ve experienced tragedy, and I know what it’s like to be stripped of your confidence, self-worth, and desire to do anything great, but simple works like, “You can do it,” is like giving someone mouth to mouth resuscitation. It breathes life into your soul. Mrs. Page simply told her the truth. Truth gives you strength to accept the unchangeable and the confidence to use it for God’s glory. Kechi may not know this, but she empowered me. As a matter of fact, the entire gala had a life-changing impact on me.

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