I finally finished reading a book I started back in the fall (if you must know, I’m a freaky slow reader…I deal with it.) It’s by one of my favorite authors and you’d think I’d hurry right through it, but…I’m a freaky slow reader.
Anywaaays…near the end of the book, she brings up the subject of being “enough”…especially when it comes to being creative. Being a creative myself, I struggle with this idea of being “enough”. Not just in my creative dealings, but in life in general.
She quotes the line from the movie Cool Runnings…based on the true story of the first Jamaican bobsled team. John Candy, who played their coach in the movie, had won gold in Olympic bobsledding twenty years earlier but had become a complete loser ever since. The Jamaican team is expressing their desperation to win a medal, to which the coach replies, “If you’re not enough before the gold medal, you won’t be enough with it.”
I know this truth like the back of my hand, but I every time I read or hear it, it’s like it’s brand new to me. I’m like, “Yes, gosh, that’s so true!” “I should remember this.” “Why didn’t I think of that?” And the thing is, I HAVE heard it, it IS true, and I SHOULD remember it. But I don’t. I allow my own doubts to push this truth to the back of the line, when it should be at the head of it from now on.
We’ve all been there though. The times when you have felt like you just didn’t measure up to expectations…from others or yourself. The times you were pretty sure that the points and laughter were directed at you. That time you thought he or she loved you, but they didn’t. The “flashbulb memory” from 20 years ago that still pops up every so often, floating there as if to say, “NOT WOOOORRRTTHHHYYYY.” Something happened that took a major withdrawal from your enough bank.
We may still say things like, “I’d be enough if I could lose weight.” “I’d be enough if I could sing like her.” “I’d be enough if I had more money to buy the things I want.” “I’d be enough if I could just get him to ask me out.” “I’d be enough if I could just read faster!” “I’d be enough if ______.” Fill in the blank with what would make you “enough.”
We can’t live our lives looking toward that next big “whatever” to make us “enough.” We are enough right now…right where we are. No, we may not be as thin as we’d like, or make as much money as we’d like, or be as popular or artistic or musical or _____________ as we’d like…but we. are. enough. Period. None of those things should have any sway on our happiness or enough-ness.
Conditions, things, people, dollar signs, hair color, scale numbers…nope. They won’t do it for you. They can’t give you the “enough” you desire.
This same author was writing about going through a pretty difficult time at one point in her life. She’d reached a dry spell in her writing. She was feeling empty…like her soul was sick and needed spiritual advice. She needed to feel that she was enough. She decided to talk to the pastor at her son’s school. In a nutshell, he told her, “The world can’t give that to you. But the good news is that by the same token, the world can’t take it away.”
The world can’t make me feel like I’m “enough”…I can only find that through trusting what God says about me and what I know to be true based on His Word. I am desired and I am chased after by the God of the universe. I am accepted. I am made worthy through the blood of Jesus. (Ephesians 1:6; Romans 8:16-17; 1 Corinthians 6:20; Philippians 1:6)
I can’t find my “enough-ness” in any other way. But the good news is, once I get it, the world can’t take it away, either.