The true beginning of self-confidence is placing your confidence fully in Jesus. Lose confidence in him, and sooner or later your own boastings will burst and look as sorry as pricked balloons. When Jesus was arrested and tried, Peter was amazed to find himself shrinking. He became the shrinking man, so small that the words of a servant girl frightened him. So he put on an act, pretending to be like every other man around. He warmed himself at a fire with other godless characters and became one of them, cursing and swearing, denying that he had anything to do with Jesus of Nazareth. True, we need not wait a lifetime to become perfect in Christian virtue before we can be of use to God. But for our own souls’ sake, we should pray as Paul did to know Christ. In the widest sense, the effectiveness of the whole Church is affected by whether Christians act like Christians.