Redefining “Enough”

So I have become enamored with a new show on Tru TV. If you had told me a year ago that I would enjoy a whopping 3 shows on that channel I would have called you a liar. But here we are.

The show is called Adam Ruins Everything and I’ll boil it down for you: Adam takes widely believed misconceptions and debunks them in a funny format. It’s stats, facts, and laughs. He concludes with a “take away” that offers hope and mercy in the only way the world can offer. It’s not perfect, but it is nice to see someone on TV cutting people some slack.

In “Adam Ruins Weight Loss” Adam takes 3 myths about losing weight and crushes them. Low fat food doesn’t help you lose weight. Counting calories is a crap shoot. Intense workout regiments like those followed on “The Biggest Loser” confuse your body and make it nearly impossible to keep the weight off long term. But here’s the positive take away for his chubby companion- It is not worth it spending all our time looking to other people’s definition of beauty. We should make healthy choices because they make us feel better and we should make them one small step at a time so we can stick with them. Amen.

So this is what I have been thinking about spiritually. I have a tendency to want to assess every area of my life where I am falling short and try to fix it all at once- much like the actor on Adam’s show. I watch too much TV and don’t read enough. I also don’t pray enough. Read my Bible enough. I procrastinate on laundry so it doesn’t get done until it is a huge hassle. I don’t vacuum enough. Wash our sheets enough. Spend enough time just being with my kids. I don’t go to bed early enough. I don’t spend enough time with my husband. I don’t rest enough. I don’t cook enough, bake enough, clean enough…

Of course the key word is enough.

Living up to enough is exhausting.

So I’m going to take a little page out of Adam’s book and say if we are looking to our society to tell us what enough is, then enough is a myth. Enough is the siren that lures  our battered ship on the sea and laughs cruelly as we crash upon the rocks.

It is time to ask ourselves some questions about enough. Go ahead, ask yourself. I’ll wait.

What is enough?

Who determines how much is enough? Is it me or someone else?

Is my enough the same as everyone else’s enough?

Am I basing my enough on incomplete data gathered from superficial observations of the lives of others?

I can’t answer those questions for you, I can only answer for myself. I will tell you that if I take stock of all the things I am doing and focus only on where I fall short of enough, I have no room in my life for people, grace, or thankfulness. I will take my eyes off God, who is more than enough, and place them on my sinful fallen self.

So in order to combat the “not enough” virus that permeates our consciousness, let me offer a take away of my own-

God has redeemed you. You were not enough- not by a long shot. That feeling of inadequacy is rooted in the sinfulness of your heart. But God took your “not enough” and made it enough by giving up His most precious, only-begotten Son. When you, His fallen creation, are clothed in Christ He sees enough. Amidst all your failures, foibles, and falling short, God sees His child- the child who doesn’t have to work to keep their place in the family, but who has been adopted and given the name of Love Himself. He loves you totally and completely and nothing you do today will make Him love you more or less. He loves you totally, absolutely, unconditionally. That is the truth.

Only with that truth in place can we acknowledge that God is far more than we could ask for. Only in response to His grace can we catch ourselves in the act of self-criticism and redeem that moment by remembering that God is made perfect in our weakness. We can humble ourselves by praying a quick prayer at a stoplight, or keep track of what we are thankful for- just one thing a day. We can read a psalm or a chapter a day (Psalm 104 is just amazing). We can take baby stepson our spiritual lives not out of guilt, or to make us appear holier, or to help us become worthy of God’s favor. We can take these steps because they nourish the soul, and when they are added up lead to a life that acknowledges our God who is more than enough.

What tempts you to believe you are less than enough? Hear these words: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.” (Jeremiah 31:3) His love is everlasting and faithful.

 

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