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Posts Tagged ‘enough’

Love is a word that seems to be so easily dismissed in my brain. Love is one of those convoluted words that seem to carry so many different levels of meaning. I hear love being tossed out all the time. We use it to describe things we like. We use love at the end of conversations and family gatherings. We also use love as a description word that translates into deep meaning.

Love runs deep in me

I would describe myself as someone who loves deeply. I value the word love very much. I do not toss that word out flippantly. I want to be a person who loves deeply. I want to show love to others in a way that they never knew was possible. Honestly, I love loving.

However, there resides a dark place in me that can’t seem to grasp reciprocated love. I dismiss love so quickly that it just ricochets off my guarded heart. As I find great joy in loving others, I see myself as unlovable. Some reasons because that has been the message told to me, and some my own self perception from life. When someone tells me that they love me the words seem to echo without a place to land inside of me.

Dismissing love serves two purposes in my life.

The first comes from the core of knowing pain and wounds that run deep in me. I have experienced grief from loss of relationships I valued greatly. In my efforts to guard against pain, feeling loved has little room to take root. To allow love to take root in me would mean risking pain. Some where along this road of grief I traded in my heart, desperate to know love, for safety.

The second purpose is an extension of the first. Experiencing deep loss, and relational wounds, has rocked my self-perception. In the midst of that pain, I believe in the lie that says, “I am not enough” and “I am not worth loving.” My skewed self-perception and relational wounds have told me that I only worth conditional love at best. Those lies have dictated many courses in my journey.

In the past couple of years, I have learned that the only way to dispel a lie is with truth. Truth has a louder voice than the lie. Truth is sustaining where as lies require me to anchor them. There is only one who has claimed to be “the way, the truth, and the life.

Truth tells me that I am loved. Truth states that we know love “because he first loved us.” Love laid down his whole life so that the vail of my own self-perception would be torn in two.

I am still in a place of wrestling through doubt that the word love applies to me. I still experience pain where that message seems true.

I have known glimpses of love. I say glimpses because I hold loosely to those moments. Fear still has its grip on me. Everyday I pray for perfect love to drive out all my fear. One day I will know in my heart, and not just my head, that I am worth love. Until then, “he is working on me.

How do you respond to love?

What risks come with love for you?

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There have been some pointed times in my life where I can hear God. Those words are usually in bite size sentences. Whatever the words, they stick. Sometimes he just asks a question. Sometimes he speaks tenderly to me. Lately, I have been hearing his soft tender voice with simple words that get into my core.

As I have been thinking through this season of life I am in, I keep hearing the repeated question of, “Tracee, am I enough?

My knee jerk reaction is to say, “of course you are Lord.” Almost like Peter saying to Jesus, “you know I love you”on the beach that day. But is he?

Maybe I need to be asked three or more times like Peter. A repeated response can start to make you think.

I have talked before about my struggles with knowing that I am enough, but what about God? Is he enough for me?

There are conversations in the bible where God says, “I am with you.” The same is true for someone who follows after him. This is a promise.

So why do I dismiss the promise? What keeps me from believing?

For me, my lack of belief stems from different things. I have old patterns of life that keep me on the path of self-sufficiency. Out of that place, I choose the way of control more than trusting in him. I can depend on my logic verses faith that believes in what is unseen.

I also struggle with beliefs about my self-worth. If I am being honest, I question being someone who is worth staying with. Therefore, it seems easier to dismiss the promise for me.

Another subtle way I can dismiss the promise is by asking others to pray for me. I also realized that I can depend on the prayers of others to talk to God for me rather than believing in his words for me. As if saying that someone else is more worthy of the promise than me. God says to me, “Tracee, I am with you.” Those words are for me.

To really grasp the understanding of God being WITH me would change my life and perspective. I know my life would look so different if those words took on weight. Those words matter. Those words should be everything to me.

I want God, and just God, to be enough for me. I think about how much pressure, and even sometimes demand, would be removed from other people if I believed God was enough. There is freedom, even for myself, when I surrender to the promise that He is enough.

He is working on me. The more I understand that he is enough, I will know that I am as well.

Is God enough for you?

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Being Enough

I have been stuck on this word “enough” for quite some time. The road to understanding that word for me seems eternal. To believe in myself that I am enough would probably change life as I know it. I have days of dipping in and out of that belief. I desire for that word to take a root of significance in me.

Believing you are enough is understanding that you don’t have to earn everything. Believing that I am enough enables me to feel the freedom to just be me. Apart from this belief it is harder to experience life without thinking there is some unmeetable bar or standard to live up to.

As I read Jacob’s story I can’t help but see the intense struggle that he has with knowing he’s enough. Jacob has had to fight for everything in his life. He has had to fight for love, attention, worth, recognition, and his uniqueness. Jacob never knew he was enough. This belief facilitated his restless fighting with the Lord that night.

I see in my own story how this restless desire to believe I am enough plays out. I wrestle with feeling like I have to prove my worth in relationships. This also plays out in the area of wanting to believe that just me has something significant to offer. In life I have experienced being labeled by different things. Those labels have carried more weight in my life then the truth that just me is enough.

As I wrestle with being enough, I find myself struggling with the belief that life is all up to me. I become very self-sufficent in efforts to earn everything. That is an immense amount of responsibility I put on myself.

At the end of a long night of fighting with God, I do believe that Jacob began that new day with a new mindset. Jacob was changed that night. I think it came from finally shifting all his self efforts to earn being enough to just believing God was enough.

The next day Jacob had an interaction with his brother Esau. This was the first conversation where you can see the shift in Jacob. Esau met Jacob out on the road. Jacob offered his brother a huge gift. Jacob finally opened his hands of everything to his brother. There was a release in Jacob. I can almost sense Jacob’s exhale of freedom as he said to Esau, “1 Please, take my blessing that is brought to you, because God has dealt graciously with me, and because I have enough.” So he urged him, and he took it.”

How freeing are those words, ‘I have enough.” God became enough for Jacob. Jacob shifted the weight from life being up to him, to finding signifcance in being enough. I desire to know that exhale for me. I am wrestling my way there. I am ready for the shift of resting in the fact that he’s enough, which makes me enough.

Do you believe you are enough?

What holds you back from knowing you are enough?

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Today I was living out the old SWV song, “Just One of Them Days.” All you hip hop fans sing it with me…”just one of them days that a girl goes through, when I’m angry inside, don’t wanna take out on you…”

Anger is my least favorite emotion. I seem to get stuck there. I can kick my ace at the gym, talk it out with friends, or drink a nice cold chai from starbucks and nothing seems to make a dent. Anger is the emotion that my heart has the hardest time navigating through. With anger, I seem to carry around tight fists and a hard heart. I hate that.

So what is my remedy….journaling. No other outlet suffices for time wrestling in out with my maker. Today I camped out at my usual Starbucks with pen in hand and a clean page readied to catch me as fell to my metaphorical knees. After a time of flipping around to different places I landed on the perfect speech for me.  Psalm 95 was the truth for my holy of holies today.

Psalm 95:7 states, “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the desert where your fathers tested and tried me, though they had seen what I did.”

The Isrealites tested and tried the Lord every day. God revealed himself to his people all the time. He saved them from slavery, led them out to safe pastures, provided food and water in the desert. He protected them with a pillar of fire and yet they tested and tried the Lord. How was God not enough? To whom could they compare him to?

I am guilty of the same testing and trying. There are so many times that I look around at other people and other things for life and satisfaction. God reveals himself to me. I know what he has done for me. I know that he is my maker, which means he is the only one who knows how to break my anger, release me from my fears, heal my brokenness, and satisfy me. He is the only one who is enough.

God was dismissed by his people. They saw his provisions, love, care, faithfulness, and goodness everyday. He still failed to be enough. The question I have to ask myself is how many times do I see and hear him and dismiss him? Too many times I find myself in the of battling with a hard heart. The truth I am reminded of today is that God is the only one who is enough.

What or who are you comparing to Him?

Is he enough for you?

How’s your heart?

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