The Cure to the “Not Enough” Mentality

A picture of me worshipping God on Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga, TN.
Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga, TN

This is something I have struggled with for as long as I can remember. The girls in elementary school I thought I wasn’t good enough to be friends with. My grandmother who made sure I had a fake tan and makeup on for church. A mom who moved to Florida when I was 7. There have even been times that I didn’t think I was enough for God because I didn’t open my Bible every single morning.

The weird thing is I didn’t realize this had been going on until I got married. I have such an incredible husband, Luke is truly a gift from God. Because he goes beyond everything I prayed for in a husband, I went into the marriage with this mentality that I wasn’t enough for him. That he could have done so much better. I would have such a high when he would praise me for something good I did, and I would have a very bad low when I disappointed him. So much of my worth was tied into his perception of me.

It was through the Holy Spirit and Luke himself that my eyes were opened to realize that this was all very wrong. All of this striving to be this perfect person to everyone, and putting myself down when I didn’t meet “the mark”, all had a root in fear. The fear of not being enough.

There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 1 John 4:18

What does it mean to be “perfected in love”? Well after some digging, I discovered the Greek word used for “perfected” here means to make complete. This idea of not being enough has no place in the love of God, because it is His love that makes us complete.. that makes us enough. It is when we allow ourselves to receive God’s love that we become free of lack.

As this revelation was given to me, I began to see this image in my mind of my body as an x-ray and within my body was this sort of bar graph (see below). The graph represented how I see myself versus how I actually am. The lines that represented how I see myself on went up only about a quarter of the way of the graph, but then there were lines that represented God’s love and they connected to the other lines and brought them all way the way to the top!

A bar graph that represents how I view myself versus how God views me.

Through this image of this graph, God was visually showing me this eye-opening truth. When God’s love is represented, there is nothing missing or wrong with me. When God’s love is represented, there is nothing missing or wrong with you.

However, in the same way, if His love isn’t fully represented, then that leaves room for these negative, false thoughts about yourself. When we don’t fully know and receive His love for all that it is, then we are making room for this torturing fear of not being enough.

So I think the big question is how do you and I go about not only knowing, but actually receiving God’s love for us?

Well, I think a big part of this answer is valuing God Himself. Yes, you may know God loves you, you’ve memorized John 3:16, but how important is that to you?

It is worthless to read a Bible verse about how loved you are if it doesn’t change how you see yourself.

Think about your parents… when they are disappointed in you, that hurts you. When they say they’re proud of you, that feels amazing! Why? Because you love them and, therefore, highly value their opinion of you.

Or maybe think about your boyfriend or spouse… man, when Luke lets me know I did something he didn’t like, that cuts me to my core. And, in the same way, when he tells me how pretty I look one day, I feel like a million bucks! Again, this is because I love him and I place so much value in what he says and thinks about me.

But how much value do we place on what God says and thinks about us? Does that hold any weight in your heart and mind?

Your initial answer is of course you value what God says about you, but I challenge you to dig deep. Because if this held the proper weight in our mind, we could constantly feel like a million bucks… but in more holy terms. That feeling would be far greater than a million bucks.

The more we value what God says, the more we will see our value.

That’s how my husband put it and he is right on target. Worship Him, read His Word, talk to Him, let Him know how much you love and appreciate Him. Not just so you can see yourself better, but because you really do love Him and appeciate all He has done for you!

I encourage you to find some time today to look up some Scripture about what He thinks of you. Read and repeat what your Father has to say about you. Realize the reality of what He says, recognize that it is truth. The King of the Universe absolutely adores you.

But don’t just stop at reading His Words. Tell Him how much you value His Words! Find time today to worship Him and express how much you value and cherish all that He is. The more often you do this, the more weight His Words and feelings toward you will have in your heart and mind. Not only that, but he is so worthy of our praise! He is such a good, good Father.

The next time you are tempted to think you are somehow not enough, be intentional about putting His opinion before anyone else’s, including yours. Priase His name, and let His love and truth fill your mind until there’s no room for anything else!

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