I'm Not Enough (with Not crossed out)

Believing You’re Not Enough

I encounter multiple people every week in our counseling office or in the groups and classes we lead who believe down in their soul that they are “not enough.” When I ask them, “What do you think would be enough,” it’s as if they are implying that they have no idea of what “enough” would be — they just know that they’re not.

Striving to prove you are enough

The world’s requirement for being enough is by earning, proving, or deserving to be enough relative to the standards and expectations of society. Conversely, God’s principles in scripture teach that in order to be enough as a human being is by acknowledging and confessing to God your realization of not being enough. From this humble, self-denying perspective, our “enoughness” is fully defined by Christ and how He loves, knows, and accepts you.

Through the lens of your inborn temperament nature, your upbringing, your life experiences, and more, every person establishes their identity, worth, and value. The only way to do this through the worldview of the fallen, human world is by comparison. How would a person know if they are tall enough without assessing their height relative to the height of others? That is exactly what leads a person to believing they are not enough — their “enoughness” measured on an arbitrary, infinite standard of perfection. From that viewpoint, it is impossible to ever come to the conclusion that your are enough. And as these false beliefs accumulate over the course of your life, the only logical thing to belief is that you are “not enough.”

Here are several examples:

  • Not smart enough
  • Not social enough
  • Not enough to be accepted
  • Not intelligent enough to be right
  • Not close enough to perfect to be worthy
  • Not competent enough in what I do
  • Not strong enough
  • Not enough to be loved
  • Not a good enough father
  • Not outgoing enough
  • Not pretty enough
  • Not skinny enough
  • Not enough money
  • Not spiritual enough
  • Not a good enough wife
  • Not enough to deserve the promotion
  • Not enough for even God to love me

“Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.”

romans 15:7 niv

Enough by being not enough

The Christian worldview found in the Holy Bible describes a way of believing, thinking, feeling, and doing that stands in direct opposition to the patterns of the world. In my book, entitled Addition By Subtraction: God Turns Your Broken Pieces Into Masterpieces, I highlighted fifteen of God’s paradoxes. These are the words of Jesus that seem to contradict our human way of thinking:

  •  To be whole, you must be broken (from Psalm 51:17)
  •  To really live, you must die (from Galatians 2:20).
  •  To save our life, we must lose it (from Luke 17:33)
  •  To be wise, we must become fools (from 1 Corinthians 3:18)
  •  To reign, you must serve (from Matthew 25:21)
  •  To be exalted, you must become humble (from Matthew 23:12)
  • To be first, you must be last (from Matthew 20:16)
  •  To bear fruit, you must first die (from John 12:24)
  •  To be strong, you must become weak (from 2 Corinthians 12:10)
  •  To have, you must freely give (from Acts 20:35)
  •  To be free, you must submit (from Romans 6:18)
  •  To gain, you must lose (from Philippians 3:7-8)
  •  To possess, you must accept having nothing (from 2 Corinthians 6:10)
  •  To find happiness, you must stop seeking it (from Matthew 5:3-10)
  •  To be more like Jesus, you must die to ourselves (from Matthew 16:24)
  • To be enough, you must accept that being not enough is a good thing (Romans 15:7, John 10:28)


Contact us if you’re ready to start or learn more about depression counseling at Life Training.

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