I recently participated in a group discussion on Facebook among women who are studying together the book "A Confident Heart" by Renee Swope. Many of the topics we discussed were light-hearted and and revolved around our preparations for the upcoming Holiday Season. There was one question, however, that unified the group in an way I did not expect.
The question: "What doubt do you want to turn away from?"
The answers: Almost every answer revolved around the statement "That I am not good enough".
I'm not a good enough mother. I'm not a good enough wife. I'm not a good enough daughter. The list moved on from there. . .I'm not good enough at my job or in my church position. My words aren't good enough; I'm a terrible cook or housekeeper. I'm not a good enough neighbor.
That's a lot of doubt my friends! Every single comment contained some aspect of the "good enough" issue! As I read them, my heart ached for all of us. This was a group of godly women brought together in fellowship and caring and our number one doubt concerned being "good enough" for everyone around us.
Frankly, I was surprised that so many were willing to share this burden. I knew I felt that way, and I knew a few others struggled with this issue, but I thought we were in the minority. I look around at work and at church and in the mall and I see a lot of women who seem to have things pretty well in hand. They appear confident and happy. They couldn't possibly feel as overwhelmed and unworthy as I do, at times.
I guess the key is that word appear. It's all on the outside--the confidence; the calm exterior. It's like piece of wrapping paper that we put around ourselves as a protective armor, thinking that if the package is wrapped up nicely no one will see the doubt and discouragement lurking beneath. But, wrapping paper makes terrible armor! It gets worn and it tears and soon some of what is hiding becomes visible. We can get so busy re-wrapping ourselves, trying to hide what we don't want others to see, that we never address the real problem.
We aren't good enough. There isn't enough wrapping paper in the world to keep our unworthiness hidden.
We need to get our good enough from God. We need the sacrifice of Christ to cover our crimson sins and make us as white as snow. We need His love to infuse our thoughts and our words and our actions. We need to put on God's armor--His belt of truth, breastplate of righteousness, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, and sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:13-17). God's armor will never wear and tear and lay us bare to condemnation.
And we need to remember one more thing--"We do not have a High Priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are--yet was without sin. Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need." (Hebrews 4:15-17)
I'm pretty sure that means that God has my back. He knows about every doubt, every time I make a mistake or hurt someone I love, every hidden sin, and every word of discouragement that Satan is speaking into my heart. The writer of Hebrews assures me that God does know my pain; He sees my tears and hears the unspoken doubts in my heart. Jesus can sympathize with every bit of the ugly I experience because He came and lived in this ugly world and He hurt, too. He endured all of that for me, so that I could come to Him and lay all of my burdens at His feet and surrender my pain and doubt to Him. I can tell Him that I hurt and that nothing I do seems to be good enough, and He will hold me close and look me in the eyes and tell me the truth. . . .
God is my good enough.