You Are Enough

  

It’s amazing how at the age of 33, I still allow the voices from my childhood to influence my life today.

When you think back over your past, your history, there are always moments in time that stand out to you – good and bad. You’re history made you who you are today, but it doesn’t have to dictate your future. Silencing the voices of inadequacy in your head are possible, but you have to give in to God first, knowing He made you perfect, just the way you are.

I can remember the day as if it was yesterday. An awkward, and completely average (not overweight) little girl was standing in her friend’s bedroom playing dress up, only to be scolded by the friend’s mother. “Don’t wear that! Take it off now!” You’ll stretch it out!” At 8 years of age, I found myself holding back tears while I was told I wasn’t ‘skinny’ enough to play dress up. I saw myself as ‘different’ and ‘fat’ from that day on.

Fast forward to age 16. Try outs for the youth group band. All my life I had been told I had a gift for singing. My grandmother even called it an anointing. “Your vocal range is amazing! But we just like her better since you haven’t been trained on harmonies.” The consolation from the pianist didn’t help – “You’re a much better singer than her, but it’s a popularity thing; I’m sorry.” From that day on I didn’t see my voice as a gift from God, or anointed; I saw it as “not good enough”.

I’m 19 years old, standing in the parking lot of “B’s” apartment complex, getting ready for him to move to California. He kisses me tenderly and then holds my face in his hands and says to me: “You’re so pretty – but you’d be beautiful if you just lost these round cherub cheeks.” After that moment, I no longer saw myself as pretty or perfect. I looked in the mirror and only saw my flaws – my round cheeks, scars, crooked ears, etc. I saw myself as not pretty enough, not beautiful enough, not perfect enough.

For far too many years, I’ve let those voices from my past take up residence in my present – at many times even tainting my future. These voices in my head, moments in time, words that were said – I allowed them to shape me into who I am today: the girl who battles with her weight, who is self-conscious to sing where others can hear her, who feels unbeautiful, and who feels completely inadequate most of the time to complete what God has put in her heart for G.R.A.C.E.

But something clicked this week. Maybe it was when I realized how stupid it was to worry about my voice. Or perhaps it was when I was reminded, as long as I am in the will of God, then I am the right girl, in the right place, at the right time, doing exactly what I am supposed to be doing.

But the real freedom from these voices came when I sought God for His answer to the voices from my past.

Anytime we accept the idea that we are not enough, we negate all that Christ laid down for us to be whole, perfect, and blameless in the eyes of God. We aren’t just saying “I’m not enough”, we are saying “Jesus, you aren’t enough”. That revelation right there silenced the voices of my past. I never want to diminish or devalue all that God has done for me because He loves me and made me perfect just the way I am.

Psalm 139: 13-16 NLT
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous – how well I know it. You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment laid out before a single day had passed.

I heard God say to me – “You are enough for the job you need to do. You are enough for the desires I have put in your heart. You are enough for the man I have for you. YOU ARE ENOUGH!”

Words can hurt, and because we are human, they won’t easily be forgotten – but with the help of God, and knowing you are perfect in Him, you can silence those doubts when they try to take up residence in your thoughts and actions.

So when those voices rise up in your head to say: you aren’t pretty enough, skinny enough, smart enough, or whatever inadequacy you’re facing – remember YOU are enough because God on the inside of you is all you will ever need to be complete and perfect in Him! He doesn’t create subpar works of art – He creates priceless masterpieces.

 

 

Seeing Past the Imperfect

This last week I pulled my crochet hooks out of hiding and dusted off my mad skills to start working on some goodies for a little boy that’ll be here this summer (a friend’s, not mine).

So I set my sights on making something I’ve never even attempted before: baby booties.

If you know me, then you know once I set my mind to something, I’m going to do it and redo it till it’s perfect. Yes. I will absolutely admit to being a perfectionist.

As I began following the directions for these super adorable baby booties, I quickly noticed two things: 1. The person who wrote the directions obviously couldn’t do math as the stitches didn’t add up – which irritated this perfectionist to no end (who is now holding a lumpy bootie) and 2. Sometimes, no matter how closely you follow the directions, things don’t always turn out the way you might expect them to.

I knew the moment I realized this, that there was a big life lesson to learn here.

I have worked very hard over the years at letting the small imperfections go. Every time I give something away, all I can think about is the one stitch that was missed or the seam that is slightly uneven. But the receiver of that gift will never notice that imperfection unless the giver points it out.

This is like us and God. We spend all of our time focusing on our imperfections; focusing on the things we wish we would have changed, could have done differently, or let go of.

Oh, BUT GOD!!

God doesn’t see the imperfections in us. He sees us as His beautiful creations, made in His image. He sees all the good still ahead of us, not the sin in our past that we’ve been forgiven of. He sees us through eyes of love, not eyes of hate.

It’s us who continually bring up the “but”s. But what about? But don’t you remember? But I’m not? But I can’t?

But what about the really big but? The…But what about when you follow the instructions/directions exactly and things still don’t turn out the way you expected? Like, for example, all of the expensive education I have, and feel absolutely 1000% that it was what God wanted me to do at the time, but I’m not using any of it right now?

That’s where the only two “buts” there should ever be come in, the “but God” and the “but faith”.

When we, as Christians, fully understand God’s love for us, and His desire to prosper us, not to harm us, we’ll understand that even when things don’t happen the way we want or think, it’s ok because God’s got it!

God doesn’t just see past any imperfections, He sees the big picture, the beginning from the end. He sees what we don’t. When all we see is how something didn’t go according to plan or how the instructions said it should, He sees the true end and all of the steps in between that we’re still going to take. This is where we have to trust wholeheartedly, by faith, in God and His love for us.

So the next time something happens and you find yourself frustrated with the outcomes and are left feeling imperfect, remember to see yourself as God sees you and have faith that the best is still to come, because it’s not over yet, not by a long shot in God’s plan for you!

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The “perfect” vs my “imperfect”