Radhanath Swami Answers: We have to associate with people who have confidence, and become inspired and enthused. We were speaking about Srila Prabhupada. He had such a burning compassion for other beings that he was willing to go to the most impossible, incredible places. By associating with him, even simple people who just grew up with no conception of Dharma, no conception of Bhakti, they were going to countries without any money, without knowing anyone there, and were reaching hundreds and thousands of people and giving them bhakti, giving them Krishna. Where did they get that confidence from? From Prabhupada.
The greatest confidence, according to the Gita, is to understand that we are not the doers. We should simply aspire to be instruments of God’s grace. Then we can have incredible confidence, incredible enthusiasm, incredible fearlessness and most importantly, incredible character, integrity and dignity (because we feel the responsibility to be an instrument of grace, a power so much more than ourselves.) I am a very small person, I went to one semester of a junior college and I didn’t do well either and that’s the extent of my education and here we have all these people with PhDs and master’s degrees in IIT asking me questions. Do I have confidence to answer your question? No. But if I am just surrendered to be an instrument of God’s grace, my Guru’s grace, then there could be unlimited confidence beyond our own abilities. And that’s within all of us and that comes when we associate with people who access that grace.