This last week I asked the question, Am I doing enough? Is the blog enough? Am I doing enough for you God? Am I enough!? There is no doubt that these questions come about in all of our hearts. And it’s not always in our faith. We are a generation that wants to be enough and more! We are constantly seeking approval and the same goes in our faith. I asked this question to someone I would consider a spiritual mentor in my life. His response resignated with me that I asked him to write it for this blog. Are we doing enough for you God? I don’t want to be a Christian Superhero in someone else’s eyes. I want to be a Christian Superhero in yours God.
Help Me Love You More Lord- Dave Morehead
Recently, someone asked me a question. I was a bit uneasy to respond for it is a question I too have wrestled with. “Am I doing enough?”, the questioner wondered. “Am I wasting the talent or resource or opportunity God has entrusted to me?” While the question often has more to do with a sense of personal value than truly not doing enough, we do have a responsibility to use our gifts well. So the question is a good one.
Let’s first deal with the question of value. We often teach our children that our love is not dependent on what they do. However, as adults we frequently act as if God’s love is able to be earned…or lost. This is not just a Christian issue. Uncertainty about one’s own value is revealed across humanity in our defensiveness, perfectionism, strivings, lack of grace, selfishness, and on and on. For a variety of reasons, we do not yet believe that God, let alone others, could love us for who we are. Children test their parents in this way…would you love me if I did (fill in the blank)? And newlyweds test each other with…will you love me when I’m old and grey and wrinkled? The reality is that most of us have fears about measuring up, achieving approval, and being loved for who we are, in spite of our faults. But God doesn’t change (it is one of the most comforting aspects of His nature) and the Bible is full of expressions of His love for us.
Next, let’s consider what we’re actually called to do here on earth. In our action-based culture, sometimes we forget that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. That’s it. If you had to boil faith and life down to one thing, Jesus told us explicitly what that is…love Him. One of the most powerful prayers I have been taught to pray, and one which will certainly be answered positively, is “Lord, help me to love You more.” This gets to the heart of our purpose on earth and is a prayer that continues to change my life. In our culture, we attribute action to value and more action to significance. But this is not how God operates. A missionary friend of mine said, “It took three years for my wife to realize that God didn’t NEED her in Nigeria.” If this couple had refused God’s call to Nigeria, God would have raised up another family to do His work there. The reality is that there is only one thing God lacks that we can give Him…ourselves.
So, how should we deal with this question that arises for all of us? For my part, I have come to regard this question as a “tell” that indicates work is required on one of two fronts. If it is primarily an emotional response associated with a collapse of confidence, getting more sleep, slowing down, and being present usually addresses this temporary crisis. If the questions go deeper and really are related to my King’s will for my life, I surrender again and wait and listen for the Lord’s guidance and direction. Another friend passed this simple motto to me not long ago…surrender, trust, obey. The combination of praying “Lord, help me love you more” and the practice of “surrender, trust, and obey” brings us back to the Lord’s feet, where His love overcomes all and chases away the fear and worry that periodically arises in this fallen land.
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