Jesus

I Am Not Good Enough (and that’s okay)

I’m confronted everyday with a reality that I don’t really care to acknowledge. I am not good enough. I’m a terrible follower of Jesus. With my words I’m great, but my actions rarely back it up. I’m far more selfish than I care to admit with my wife. As a pastor I’m regularly confronted with issues I have no clue how to deal with. In the most important areas of my life I am not good enough to do them even remotely well.

I’m confronted everyday with a reality that I don’t really care to acknowledge. I am not good enough. I’m a terrible follower of Jesus. With my words I’m great, but my actions rarely back it up. I’m far more selfish than I care to admit with my wife. As a pastor I’m regularly confronted with issues I have no clue how to deal with. In the most important areas of my life I am not good enough to do them even remotely well.

Now before you write me telling me how good I am, hear me on this. I am not enough, and that’s okay.

I know this problem doesn’t only exist in me. If you were to do a quick search on the internet you will find a plethora of self-help posts telling you how you can be “all that you can be.” There’s no shortage of voices saying that if you just try hard enough, if you just want it enough, then you will be able to make it.

But I’ve got to be honest, I don’t know if that’s true. I’ve tried my hardest, but yet I still find myself ending up short—regularly.

I think we’ve bought into a lie that says we are good enough. That we don’t need anyone. That we can accomplish our dreams and be awesome and whatever else we think we can accomplish. It’s a lie that we’ve bought into and sold to kids. It’s been passed down from generation to generation and needs to stop.

It’s simply not true. I lied to myself for years thinking that I was good enough. That only got me two things: a head full of pride and a whole lot of disappointment when I realized it wasn’t true. Instead of feeling confident like the lie told me I would, I felt alone and inadequate.

I lied to myself for years thinking that I was good enough. That only got me two things: a head full of pride and a whole lot of disappointment when I realized it wasn’t true.

Listen, there is a better way. It’s not healthy when I’m running around thinking I can do all these things by myself. That’s called pride, and it’s a sin. Even worse is when I wallow in self pity because I realized again how I don’t measure up. I would argue that is also a sin. There’s a better way.

The Bible contradicts what the world says. The world says that we are good enough. But the Gospel message doesn’t back those thoughts up. No where does the Bible say Jesus died for you because you were just so awesome. Actually the Gospel says that you are a messed up, dirty, sinner with absolutely NO hope of saving yourself. Go read Matthew 5-6 if you don’t believe me. Yet despite all that we have done, all the mistakes we have made, God still loves us. When I feel that I am not good enough, I am right. But God still loves me anyway.

The problem with thinking that we can fix ourselves is that we are putting ourself in place of God. We think we can change. We think we have the power to fix ourselves. Essentially we think we are God. We would never say that, but our actions speak it. We think we are good enough. But our lives, our actions, will never be able to back that up.

The Bible holds a mirror up to the parts of our lives we’d rather forget about and shows us how ugly our sin is. But it doesn’t leave us there. There’s the incredible hope that Jesus not only loves us but wants to fix us. Can we fix ourselves? No. But God can; he can do what we cannot.

I am not good enough. On my own power I will fail at everything I try. I will be a terrible husband, pastor, follower of Jesus, friend, and, in general, person. But if stop trying and start letting God take control things start to change.

Here’s what I’ve found. That in my weakness God shines. When I finally realize I’m not good enough, God’s grace tastes so much sweeter. That’s the crazy part; God isn’t calling me to try in vain to fix myself. He is offering me help to do something I cannot do on my own.

Here’s what I’ve found. That in my weakness God shines. When I finally realize I’m not good enough, God’s grace tastes so much sweeter.

If you have bought into the lie that you are good enough like I had, stop. You aren’t good enough. But that’s okay. God is good enough, and he loves you. Let him work on you. Show him your weakness. Ask him for help. God’s grace will cover your mistakes and build you back up when you fall.

I am not enough, and I’m okay with that. Because the God I follow is more than enough. He will sustain me. I don’t have to do that myself. His grace covers me. I’m living in God’s grace, will you join me?

33 comments on “I Am Not Good Enough (and that’s okay)

  1. I’m right there with you. I always say wow..He is just so great that He still loves me after I stumble and fall on a daily basis. I will never be good enough to even try to get to where I think I should be with Him, but I’m ok with it because He loves me through all of it.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Very well said. Thank you for the timely reminder. J.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. The fact that it bothers you puts you in line more with the Publican than the Pharisee, and far ahead of many preachers I have known.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. This is such a great post! Going to share it on my Facebook. I think that lie that we are good enough hurts so many Christians and other people in general. How many lost souls have we confused by saying they are good enough? If we WERE good enough, we would have no need for Jesus.

    Liked by 2 people

    • We are far more lost and helpless then we ever though. Yet we are far more loved then we ever dared dream. Thanks for stopping by and especially for sharing so that we can continue this conversation with others!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Anonymous

    Amen! I am a work in progress.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Lauren McKinley

    It can be so exhausting trying to be good enough to fix things on our own and then so freeing/peaceful to let God take control. Thank you for the raw reminder!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I think I have always had a different perspective of being “enough.” As a child, I was a perfectionist. Whenever I failed, which was often, I felt like I wasn’t good enough, and that I was so undeserving of God’s love and grace. And although there is truth to that and what you are saying, the devil used it against me and kept me bound by it. The feeling of being not good enough made me trapped in this pattern where I never felt true freedom and love from God. But when I started to believe that I was enough, in other words that I, in the condition I was in, was enough for God to love, that no matter what I deserve love, I didn’t have to strive to earn His love, then I was able to truly find His love. To me being enough wasn’t the lie that I am better without God, or that I could do things without God, but it was the truth that I can let down my guard and that I don’t have to strive to be more than I am today, that God loves me where I am. I think we are saying the same thing, but we interpret the phrase, “You are enough” with different perspectives.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for sharing your perspective on this! I think you are right. How we view comes from what our story is. I think most people are either tempted to think we can do everything ourself or tempted to think nothing is possible. Either way Jesus frees us from those traps. God is enough for you in your circumstances and he’s enough for me in mine. Thanks for reading and adding to the conversation!

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  8. Great post, reminded me of the scripture where Jesus said that only God was good. Thank God he is more than enough and everything I need! I’m working on this 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Mihaela Echols

    You are most definitely right we cant do it on our own and I thank God for that. He dreams bigger dreams than what we can dream.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. His grace is always enough, always. This makes me enough, in him. 🙂 I strive to rest in HIS work and HIS enoughness.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. I love Ephesians 2:10 that says we are God’s masterpiece, created to do good works which God prepared in advance for us to do. We may be messed up, but we are still a masterpiece. And a masterpiece that is able to do God’s work!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Addressed and confessed like one who TRULY desires to follow Christ all the way. May God’s love, His grace and mercy be heaped upon you based on the measurements described in Ephesians 3:20. In Jesus’ name, Amen!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. classesbybeth

    Truth! We are not enough. We need Jesus as our Lord and Savior.

    Like

  14. I know I am not good enough and that makes me good enough through the power of Christ indwelling me by His Holy Spirit. Hallelujah! What a Savior! Amen!

    Like

  15. Pingback: 4 Christian Sayings That Aren’t in the Bible – Rethink

  16. A very powerful reflection. God’s glory is manifest when he rescues the down-and-out. We all have to realize the sorry state we’re in to desire God’s grace. At the same time, God motivates us to fix some things on our own: scheduling, handling finances, etc. Cooperation runs both ways. We cooperate with God by allowing Him to work in us and doing our tiny part to make this world a better place.

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  17. WOW! All over the world the Spirit of our Father Creator is moving. Unbelievable. The thing not I found out but? The thing that Father has shown me lately? He is a Mighty Simple Father and we like to complicate everything that pertains to HIM! There are so many simple things Father has worked in my spirit not in my flesh. My flesh will never be good. Even so? Inferiority complex or feeling sorry because one is not good? Does not solve anything and it is a sin like Jeffrey writes. We are not good but? Kid you not yourselves? We are not His master’s pieces until the Master is finish with us. The point is, like Jeffrey writes, quit trying and start trusting. We have messed up everything but now? The Master is revealing Himself in us — He is lifting Himself up to us down to the brown ground under the hoofs of our own horse. Isaiah 30. Thanks Jonas for directing me to this so very, very? True site. 🙂
    His love in my heart for all, thiaBasilia

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