Ever feel like you aren’t doing enough? Doing GOOD enough? I think we all do. I would love if you would join me on this journey as I read through and discuss each chapter in this book!
I have been reading Nothing to Prove by Jennie Allen (this is not an affiliate link and I get no compensation for linking this book) for a greater portion of this year. It is one of those books that I can only digest a little at a time, because it is so good! I have also noticed that no matter how long I set it down for- when I pick it back up again, it is always relevant! Please join me as I post about each chapter of the book and how it impacted my life!
Chapter 1: My Quiet Confession
You don’t have to read more than two lines in to find it…..”I am not enough.” I feel like the same goes for our daily lives! We don’t have to get but two hours or even two minutes into the day sometimes before we get hit with that overwhelming thought. The worst part is- we feel alone in thinking those thoughts! Gah! What better way for our enemy to knock us down?
“That line would wait indefinitely in the distant border of my mind, enticing me to reach it. Within me, for most of my life, would live a theory that I assumed was a fact: It was possible to arrive at a destination where I would finally prove myself. I would arrive at the line marking the place where I finally measured up to my family, my peers, my God, and my own expectations. But like the mirage in the desert, every time I thought I finally was closing in, the line backed itself up.” (Page 14)
I love that Jennie compares our idea of reaching “enough” to a mirage in the dessert. No matter how long we chase it, we are never going to find that illusion of water, because it’s just that- an ILLUSION! We have tricked our minds into thinking that if we just walk 2 more feet or maybe if we walk a little faster we will finally reach what we’ve been thirsty for. It’s an illusion.
Jennie talks about many times in her life when she didn’t feel like she was enough and I know we can tell just as many stories. Looking back, though, as much as I’d like to think all of those times I felt that way because somebody else MADE me feel that way….it’s just not true. Sure, there may have been many times where I truly was hurt by somebody else, but when I really think about it…..how many of those times did I FEEL like I was not enough because of what I THOUGHT other people were thinking about me? Our perceptions can become skewed based off of our insecurities and I am constantly reminding myself of that.
Page 21, just left me in awe. It was an “AH HA” moment for me!
” God has a different story line for us, one in which our souls are content and epic stories unfold through our lives here- but not because of us. IN SPITE OF US. Romans is pretty clear about our reality: ‘For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.’ But what if we have everything backward? What if there was a story where the ones who aren’t enough, the ones who recognize they don’t measure up, are the very ones the God of the universe picks to move wildly in and through?” 😳
When we realize we will never be enough, it’s THEN that we realize we need a God who is more than enough. A God who will fill our voids. If we believed we were enough, we may start believing we don’t NEED a God.
So, wait! Our belief that we aren’t enough is actually a GOOD thing?? I believe it can be, if we look to our God as the one who can make us enough. There is such a weight lifted when we realize we don’t HAVE to be enough and we don’t HAVE to earn our way into the “good enough people’s club.”
I love the little tid bit Jennie talks about on page 22, “God started opening doors I wasn’t even knocking on.” Now that we’ve come to the realization that we need a God to fill what we are lacking, we can start putting our trust in Him……trusting that He knows what we need more than we do.
I like to compare this to parents raising their children. Young kids may not know why we make them do chores or why we make them apologize to their sister after hitting her, but later when they look back they will see that we had their best interest at heart. Same goes with us, as God’s children. We may think we’ve got this and we have a plan! In truth, we have no idea what’s best for us. If we can just trust God and let Him do his thing…..then we can step out of the way of the doors He’s been trying to open the whole time! We’ve been in our own way.
Finally, on page 22, Jennie says, “We are finite, sinful beings. And that is okay. In fact, it is the confession that unleashes the freedom we are aching for.”
We spend our days running around complaining about how we will never be enough for anyone and telling God it’s just not fair! How could he possibly expect us to be enough?!
He doesn’t. He never did.
Those are expectations we put on ourselves.