What if Jesus isn’t really enough?
The thought came roaring at me, a fiery dart launched from the enemy straight into my wounded heart. I was vulnerable and hurting, and my enemy chose his timing well.
The question felt like a swift slap in the face, and as quickly as my mind retorted preposterous! I felt a catch in the deepest places of my heart. I would readily confess with my lips that He is most certainly enough … but in that honest moment, I realized that not every cell in my being agreed.
We talk about it, sing about it, proclaim its truth on Sundays and at Bible studies … but when the rubber hits the road, do we really live like we believe Jesus is enough?
As if in a movie, the enemy flashed before me many of the “what ifs” that like to worm their way into my mind and wreak havoc:
What if I’m always separated from my family by 2,500 miles?
What if the relationships I desire never flourish as they could and should?
What if my deepest hopes and dreams are met with failure—forever?
Do I truly believe that He is enough to satisfy, give joy, render hope, and provide a rich and meaningful life of purpose and peace, whatever my circumstances?
As scary as it was, I asked the Lord to begin showing me the truth of His sufficiency. I needed to journey with Him into my doubts and even my scariest “what ifs” to truly learn that He is all I need.
For Such a Time As This
Our belief about Jesus and His sufficiency is paramount, as this critical issue will govern our thoughts, emotions, and actions when life goes from manageable to overwhelming and clearly out of our control.
Perhaps you’re in an easy, breezy season of life, where your biggest frustration is a Pinterest cupcake fail. If so, praise God, get on your knees, and thank Him for such a season.
But if you find yourself facing a crisis or a future that feels difficult or sometimes downright unbearable, let the piercing words of truth ring in your weary head:
It is for these gosh-awful, knee-bending circumstances that Christ came in the first place.
There is no oh, I hope He can sustain and satisfy me in this mess—there is only of course He can. This is the very space in which He is ready and able to display His sufficiency.
God’s Word says, My grace is sufficient for you . . .
Even when the marriage fails and the healing doesn’t come and the friendships never materialize and the job falls through and the abuse continues and the shadow of loneliness still haunts us?
. . . for my power is made perfect in weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV).
Even when our most hair-raising “what ifs” become our reality?
Even then. Especially then.
Only He can cover over all our complicated mess, sweeping us up in the warm embrace of His love and making sense out of the tangled web of our pain. He longs to prove His sufficiency to us—perhaps He is trying to speak to you this very day through your circumstances!
What Ifs & Worst Case Scenarios
I want to ask you a hard question: to where are you running for satisfaction?
Food? Approval? Success? Relationships? Sex? Substances? Your inner self?
None of these things or a thousand more like them will ever be enough to meet your deepest need and mine. None of them will fill us in the way we so desperately need to be filled.
The enemy makes a convincing argument that we must have these crutches. He entices us to believe that Jesus is fine and good—but when the furnace of life really heats up, then we’ve reached the limits of His sufficiency.
Sweet reader, this is a lie, plain and simple. If Jesus isn’t enough when life falls apart and the other shoe drops, then faith itself loses its deepest significance, having been relegated to yet another feel-good life strategy …
But if He is enough, even in our worst-case-scenarios? Then we may jump and sing with joy, for there is no darkness or pain on this earth that is beyond His reach.
Oh yes, rest assured that Jesus is enough. For you. For me. In anything. Always.
You and I can go through the worst and come out on the other side, still standing, because of the power of our Great Redeemer. We can be still, we can thrive, we can find restoration—we can embody the words of Romans 8:37 and look up to find that we are more than conquerors through Him who love[s] us (NIV).
Leaving Lesser Things Behind
This week, I want you to try something: whenever you feel yourself needing a “fix” from your go-to source of comfort, stop and talk to yourself.
Yes, that’s right—talk to yourself. When you’re hit with that fear, that pain, that temptation, or that doubt, then stop and whisper: Jesus, you are enough.
In the grocery aisle, in the midst of the temper tantrum, in the middle of the meeting, in the quietness of your own room, whisper it under your breath—and draw strength from the truth that you don’t have to reach for that lesser source of comfort, for the Source of all comfort resides with you.
When you feel empty, feast on and be filled by God’s word. As you whisper the truth of His sufficiency, hold onto His very great and precious promises. One of my favorites in this season comes from Psalm 90:
Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days (Psalm 90:14 NIV).
I know this is an excruciatingly hard lesson to learn, one that we will likely be learning and expanding on all our lives. I know it means letting go of our hopes, dreams, crutches, and all the things we believe we must have in order to live a full and contented life on this earth.
But it is in the letting go that I’m confident we will find the lasting satisfaction for which our hearts yearn. Jesus said, For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it (Luke 9:24 NIV, emphasis added).
Let it go, dear readers. Entrust yourself to the sufficiency of Jesus, and get ready to experience firsthand the miraculous dichotomy of finding the abundant life when you abandon it to Him.
The blog drawing this month was a success! Congrats to readers Adam Tisdale & Heather King for winning the freebies this time, and a huge THANK YOU to all of you for reading and journeying with me. You guys are awesome!
This post wraps up April’s Series, Be Still: Practicing the Art of Stillness in the Midst of Turmoil. You can find all the posts from this series by selecting “Be Still” under the list of categories.
I hope these last several weeks have brought you hope, challenged you, and encouraged you to lean ever deeper into our Father!
Thank you guys for reading and commenting – I love hearing how God is working in your lives! Life is truly better when it is shared with one another.
Be sure to tune in next month, when we’ll be starting a new series all about motherhood!