Last week was ushered in with a crying fest about something I still don’t completely understand.
Since then, I’ve wrestled with feeling like a giant failure. Like I’ve fallen short and have not been a “good enough” friend, wife and Christian.
I often face this accusation when my emotions are overwhelmingly strong, particularly when those emotions include feelings of selfishness, pride and resentment that linger despite my prayers for them to be removed.
So all in all, I’ve just felt like the worst version of myself for a few weeks.
And you know what … that’s OK.
Because the truth is, even when you’re following God and “doing all right things,” you can still have those feelings of failure.
You can feel accused. Less than. Unworthy.
The best remedy I’ve found is to acknowledge that these accusation may very well be true.
Sounds counter-intuitive, doesn’t it? I’ll explain.
When I hear that voice in my head telling me that I’m not doing enough, being enough, loving enough, serving enough — that I’m just not good enough —
I internally acknowledge that I’ll always fall short. That I can never do enough good things. That I’ll never be able be good enough.
And then I remind myself that God doesn’t ask me to be good enough. He asks me to accept what has already been done.
Jesus is my righteousness–Jesus alone. I don’t need to be good. Christ has been good enough in my place.
Yes, I want to serve God with my whole life. I *want* to do good things in response to what He has done for me in the same way I *want* to do good things for my family and friends because I love them.
But I don’t do those good things to EARN their love. I do them to express my own.
This knowledge has allowed me to be unafraid when the voice of accusation rears its ugly head again.
In a strange way, it’s almost a merciful reminder.
Because I feel in control — when I feel “good” and “holy” — I’m farther away from God than when I recognize my desperate, never-ending need for Him.
So take comfort if you’re struggling. Take comfort if you feel like a failure as a believer or if you don’t feel good enough.
You don’t need to be. You need to turn to Jesus, who alone is our righteousness. If you are a believer, the work has been finished.
And what a work it is!
Thanks be to God, who frees us from the tyranny of goodness to live in freedom.
“When burdened by rules my heart falters.
To You, Lord, stumble I near.
And there You speak still, small and softly,
‘Daughter, release all your fears.
Your expectations have left you quite dry.
My expectations e’er are the same
I desire your heart, your soul, your mind.
Now go and live in My Name.
Stop turning your faith into cumbersome lists.
Stop looking to do and achieve.
Seek Me, My dear one, with all that you are,
And all else will be as it needs.”