This is a scenario that happens often in my home. A child does something- a concert, a game, a project, a test- and they do well at it. Or maybe they don’t. Being the mom I am, I either acknowledge their achievement or cheer them on in their progress.
For some reason, the response is the same:
“I messed up. This part didn’t go right and I didn’t understand that.”
“Yeah, but it isn’t a A.”
Weird, huh? We don’t expect perfection in our children, but they sure do expect it from themselves!
I think it is just in our human nature to want to be good at everything we try. That life should go our way. And when it doesn’t we think that we are a complete and total failure.
And why wouldn’t we feel this way when we are inundated with the pictures of a perfect life on a daily basis. Not only that, but when we do put a little of ourselves out for people to see and they immediately give their $.02 on our smidgen of life we share with them. Because they know better. Obviously.
It is so easy to believe we are useless, rejected, a failure in the world and not worth the air we breathe. Just look at the current rates for depression and anxiety… it’s becoming the norm instead of the exception.
The truth of the matter is we are not enough.
I am not enough.
Oh, I am fully aware of the mantra, and I am calling it out. Because enough is enough, and I in myself am not enough no matter how much I repeat it.
In and of myself, this is true. I am not perfect. I will never be perfect on earth. I am incomplete. The person in the mirror looking at me is not my whole self, no matter where I search, what I do, or how I define myself.
And in this moment of rawness, it is not where we turn to, but who we turn to that matters. We look to Christ. He is enough. He is perfect. And the best part? He can complete us. (Col. 2:10)
It is Christ who takes us where we are and makes us more than we ever thought possible. He alone takes our imperfections and uses them for a purpose! He takes the branches of our lives that are not growing and prunes us into something productive. (John 15:1-8)
When we look to self for solutions and success, we will eventually run dry of satisfaction and contentment. But when we walk with our Completer- He fills us with joy and peace and satisfaction that lasts.
Remember the woman at the well? She felt not enough. Going out in the heat of the day possibly to avoid the chattering of ladies who deemed her not enough as well.We often avoid the truth when it is presented in a hurtful way. It’s understandable.
Jesus gets into a conversation with her and reveals that, yes, she is indeed incomplete- looking for fulfillment in a series of broken relationships. We need more people who are willing to share truth in love and without the bitter venom of a condemnation we are powerless to carry out.
But Jesus didn’t leave her sitting in a puddle of guilt. That woman discovered a water that would satisfy eternally. That water was Christ, the promised Messiah. And when she found Him? She was eager to share the Living Water with all in her community- even her enemies.
Because, when we find the secret to completeness- to enoughness- we can’t keep it to ourselves. Nor are we meant to. The focus becomes, not on us and our lack, but on Christ and His mission. We forget about ourselves and whether we are enough because we remember who Jesus is and that without Him we can do nothing.
Dear Sister, there is so much more to the walk of faith than navel gazing, placing false expectations on ourselves and eventually bemoaning our existence. We were never meant to be complete without a relationship with our Creator- that separation that happened at the fall did more than just make us aware- it made us ashamed. But thanks be to God for His unspeakable Gift! He sent His Son to make a way for true fellowship again. He made a path for completeness that is found in trusting in what He did on the cross.
We want to make it more complex. There’s got to be a secret Scripture or 12 step process…. but there isn’t. Realizing Christ not only is our enough, but that He defines enough, and that He declares us to be enough needs to be enough for us. Repeat it daily. Remind the despairing. Reconcile the lost. Christ makes us enough.
Read it yourself: Samaritan Woman’s account is in John 4:1-42.