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Section 9.8 - Confidence


I would like to start with the definition of confidence.  I use the 1828 version of the Websters dictionary, because the definition it provides would be closer the the way Joseph Smith received it in D&C 121:45 than using today's dictionary.  From the Webster 1828 dictionary I would like to pull the first two definitions of confidence.  

CON'FIDENCE, noun [Latin  See Confide.]
1. A trusting, or reliance; an assurance of mind or firm belief in the integrity, stability or veracity of another, or in the truth and reality of a fact.
It is better to trust in the Lord, than to put confidence in man. Psalms 118:8.
I rejoice that I have confidence in you in all things. 2 Corinthians 7:16.
Mutual confidence is the basis of social happiness.
I place confidence in a statement, or in an official report.
2. Trust; reliance; applied to one's own abilities, or fortune; belief in one's own competency.
His times being rather prosperous than calm, had raised his confidence by success.

First, I find it fascinating that the 1828 dictionary would reference the Bible in the definition.  Second it is clear that confidence is based both on our belief in another person and/or our own abilities.  Confidence comes from leading based on truth, knowing the perfection of He who is in charge, and a clear understanding of your own talents and abilities.

President Henry B. Eyring taught:
". . . the very fact that you have been offered the oath and covenant is evidence that God has chosen you, knowing your power and capacity. He has known you since you were with Him in the spirit world. With His foreknowledge of your strength, He has allowed you to find the true Church of Jesus Christ and to beo ffered the priesthood. You can feel confidence because you have evidence of His confidence in you.” (Henry B. Eyring, “Faith and the Oath and Covenant of the Priesthood”, April 2008 LDS General Conference)

A leader needs to cultivate the trait of confidence. First by continually building and strengthening your own ability.  Reference the two enabling activities, continuously learning and continuously improving.  Without these two activities as a part of your life, you will not gain the confidence in yourself that you need to be a leader.  Second, you need to come to understand your relationship with your Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.  They have confidence in you, and as you come to know them, you will gain greater and greater confidence in them.  You will come to know when it is time to “be still” (D&C 101:16) or when it is time to “act” 2 Nephi 2:14.  You will come to trust their inspiration and feel of their guiding hand in your life.

For additional insight read these cross references:
Psalm 118:8
Prov 3:26
2 Corinthians 7:16
Acts 28:31
Gal 5:10


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