I’m going to stop telling myself “I’m enough”.

“After this Jesus went away to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, which is the Sea of Tiberias. And a large crowd was following him, because they saw the signs that he was doing on the sick.  Jesus went up on the mountain, and there he sat down with his disciples. Now the Passover, the feast of the Jews, was at hand.  Lifting up his eyes, then, and seeing that a large crowd was coming toward him, Jesus said to Philip, “Where are we to buy bread, so that these people may eat?”  He said this to test him, for he himself knew what he would do.  Philip answered him, “Two hundred denarii worth of bread would not be enough for each of them to get a little.” One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?” Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.” Now there was much grass in the place. So the men sat down, about five thousand in number.  Jesus then took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated. So also the fish, as much as they wanted. And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost.” So they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves left by those who had eaten. When the people saw the sign that he had done, they said, “This is indeed the Prophet who is to come into the world!”
John 6:1-14

 

I’m constantly preaching to myself, and making sure I believe that I truly am enough. I am enough for my husband and for the ministry I’m in. I’m enough for my friends and for my family. Who I am is enough.

I’m starting to question that.  I’m wondering if allowing myself to believe who I am enough is not causing me more stress and anxiety.

If I am enough than I could do all the things I’m supposed to do.  I could fulfill all of my husband’s wants and needs. He would never need to do anything else because I am enough.
If I am enough my family would understand my love for them and know that I am always there for them even when I’m far away, because I am enough.
If I am enough than I would always know that my body is beautiful and I would never believe lies about myself, because I am enough.
If I am enough than I would always feel competent at my job and know that I’m making an impact because I am enough.

All of those things leave me dry because I’m trying so hard to be “enough.” I’m trying to live up to expectations that are unrealistic.

When Jesus feeds the five thousand they have five loaves of bread and two fish.  What does he do? He says “give me what you have”.  After everyone eats, all five thousand of them, they have leftovers.  They have more than enough, they are overflowing.

I am starting to realize that I was never meant to be enough.  Jesus is asking me to give him what I have and he will do the rest.  He is the one that is enough, not me. I can be the person Jesus has called me to be, but, it will never be able to fill the people around me because that is not my job.  My husband is supposed to fill himself by going to the Lord, my family is supposed to rely on the knowledge of Christ to get them through the day, my friends are supposed to trust the heavenly power of Jesus to bring them to redemption.  I am not the savior of the world, Jesus is.  I can work my hardest at my job, but at the end of the day I am not the one who carries the ministry, Jesus is.

I think it’s time for me to let go of being enough, maybe it’s time for you to let it go, too.  I’m ready to trust Jesus again, I’m ready to have twelve baskets full of leftovers from my fives loaves of bread.  I’m ready for Jesus to take the small amount of hope and joy and love that I have in me and multiply it to extend to thousands of people.  I think it’s okay if we let go, I think it’s okay if we disappoint people and say no sometimes, because we don’t have to fill everyone all the time.  We can just be and know that Jesus truly has fulfilled every desire inside of us. It is exhausting trying to always enough.

“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
John 14:6

I can let go of being enough, and know that I’m not and that is okay.

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Unrealistic expectations

 

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Sometimes I have moments, moments that are raw, ugly, and scream-filled.  I cry and yell out to the Father and my heart swims in frustration and confusion.  Attacks come from all angles, and my heart is overwhelmed with all the things I should be doing or haven’t done yet. My one desire is to be looked at by someone and somehow they know I love Jesus.  I want my love for Christ to be so evident that is seeps from my pores.  I want the radiance of Christ to be my shield.  I want my actions to be above reproach and I want my conduct to represent the Father.  
But I never seem to get there, I always seem to fall short, to look more like the world than Christ, and in moments like these it frustrates me to the point of yelling, screaming, and crying to the Lord.  Begging him to make me look like Him because I hate this world and what it turns people into, I hate all its flashy lights and it’s materialism that I so easily get so sucked into.  

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I want to be a good friend, someone who is intentional and caring and allows each person grace to be fully themselves, but somehow I fall short of that as well.  I don’t make the calls I should, or I sleep instead of Skype.  I move along in my life sometimes forgetting the people whom I love in states far away.  I never write the letters I intend to and most calls go unreturned.  My heart is for them, but my actions do not represent that.  
I want to be a good mentor but time is never on my side and neither is my heart.  How can I teach when I myself am still learning all too much for me to comprehend.  
I want to be a good sister and daughter but my selfishness moves me further and further away from their hearts and I end up hurting them instead of serving them.  

All of these things I cannot do adequately, and I always feel less than good enough because I’m always falling short, always falling short of the expectations I have put on myself, and there it is, the issue.  I have placed expectations on myself that are unrealistic and detrimental to my whole being.  If I were living according to grace I would not feel overwhelmed or less than enough because It would be Christ in me, not myself.  

I cried out to the lord to give me grace;
“You already have it, beloved.”

ah, yes, of course I do.  It has always been mine but I have been so blinded by my own expectations of how perfect I should be I couldn’t see the grace staring at me from across the room, held by the prince of the peace I have been lacking.  

Today I let go of my own unrealistic expectations of myself and the anxiety that has crept into my veins causing each moment to resemble walking on egg shells.
I want to be like Christ, and that is not a request he will deny. I am not perfect, but He is. (Matthew 6:33)

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His fullness is enough.

 
And from his fullness we have all received grace upon grace.  
For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 
No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side,
 he has made him known. 
-John 1:16-18
 
 
 
There is a common theme being taught to me over and over again, each time more in depth and more soul crushing, humbling, and amazing.  It has nothing to do with me, It has nothing to do with what I can achieve, or how I can justify myself. HIS FULLNESS is what makes me enough. His fullness is more than enough to cover every inch of my empty shell.  I never have to be afraid of being full because he is full for me. He is enough, so that means I am enough. 
 

ImageI had a small breakdown yesterday evening to where I just laid on my living room floor and cried.  I eventually called Hannah, and in-between ragged breaths asked her to pray for me.  My heart was tired and all I could do was lay there and cry.  All I wanted to do was lay there and cry because I was tired of fighting, I was exhausted because I was trying to be enough for people, I was trying to justify myself over and over again so they wouldn’t think I was wasting my time. 
“I don’t want to be here anymore.”
“I’m wasting my time.”
“I’m not doing anything.” 

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“God is not moody or capricious.
He knows no seasons of change.
He has a single relentless stance toward us: He loves us.”

-Brennan Manning


I keep getting the same questions since I’ve been home; and they have nothing to do with my trip. 
“So what are you doing now?”
“Are you working, are you going to school?”
I know these questions are asked out of good intent and curiosity, but each of their faces after I answer these questions are what haunt me.  
“I’m working with the youth at Lockwood.” 
“I’m not working or going to school right now.” 
As soon as I tell them I am currently not in school or working I’m out, they write me off and their faces show their disappointment in me, I am not being a productive member to society and I will never make it in life If i cannot support myself. 
The expectations they have for my life allow for lies to seep into any small crack in my armor. 
I’m not doing anything.”

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As I lay here this morning with no job to get to, and no classes to study for, I’m thankful. 
I’m thankful I have time to drench my soul in the word, constantly. 
I’m thankful I can sit and have lunch with my dad. 
I’m thankful I can take my sister out for bike rides, and for ice cream dates. 

I’m thankful I can go to the youth sleepover tonight because I dont have to wake up for work the next morning. 

I’m thankful that his calling is enough. 
Not even his calling, HIM. 
I’m so thankful that he and his fullness represent me. That I do not have to justify myself because He alone is my justification. My life is what He wants it to be.  I’m sorry people of this world, I am currently unemployed and I am not a student at the moment.  You may think my life is going nowhere and I am ruining my life. 
But my hope is not in having a “good life”, my hope is living a life that is a sweet fragrance to my King. 

I am enough, because he is far more than enough. 

What lies are you letting hold you back from what Jesus has for you, today?