Am I enough? It’s a question asked in many of the Christian books I have read over the years. Life’s circumstances and disappointments can sometimes lead me, and those around me, to doubt the true answer to this question. You are more than enough. you are fearfully and wonderfully made. You are deeply loved. You are a child of God. I’ve joked in the past and said, “I know, I’m amazing,” but sometimes I can doubt it. When I’m disappointed or fearful of how something will turn out, I can doubt that I’m enough and question if God still sees me. In these moments I take my eyes off of Jesus and focus on the circumstances. Outwardly my actions remain the same, but inwardly I doubt, second-guess and don’t want to allow myself to hope, for fear of disappointment.
Over the last couple of weeks, God has continued to bring me to the passage in Luke 7:36-50, where Jesus encounters a “sinful woman” who weeps on his feet and then proceeds to wipe the tears with her hair. Her behavior initially made me really uncomfortable. I had to look beyond it to really see what this passage revealed about God and what he was trying to show me.
Luke 7:37-38 “When a woman who had lived a sinful life in that town learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, she brought an alabaster jar of perfume, and as she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.”
By all accounts this woman was most likely a prostitute; labeled worthless by many and publically shamed. I can only imagine how she must have hardened her heart in order to be able to do what she did. She did not see how precious she was. She probably did not trust easily, if at all. Yet, as a result of her encounter with Jesus she was transformed to the point of immeasurable confidence, and absolute love. She entered a room filled with people and was empowered to be uncomfortably vulnerable. We do not know when she first saw him but when she enters that room she was already changed by her encounter. She asked for nothing and gave everything. She didn’t care who saw her.
Luke 7:44 “Do you see this woman?”
Others could not see beyond her exterior, but Jesus saw her heart and loved her. Like her, we are not defined by our past but by our future, what we will do after our initial, as well as daily, encounters with Jesus.
This love goes beyond what we may have done and how we fall short. It applies to what we defer to in times when we feel disappointed or unseen by God in life’s circumstances.
v47 “her many sins have been forgiven–for she loved much.”
So many people let disappointment embitter them, dimming the light inside them. Yet, Jesus can heal a broken heart if we just give him all the pieces. When I face disappointments in my life I begin to love less, and it’s seen through the amount of effort I put into my work, my workout, or doubting that I can truly be loved by a man. Yet, through her encounter with Jesus this woman was able to love more. Whatever she saw in him, it gave her the strength and courage to overcome her fears. Despite all disappointments and circumstances in her life she gave all of herself, no longer her body, but her entire heart.
It’s not about whether or not we deserve God’s love. His blessings are not attached to our performance. No matter how many job interviews lead to nowhere, how many relationships do not come to fruition, or how many people have made poor decisions that disappoint you. God has not forgotten you or me. It’s about accepting that he gives love abundantly because we are more that enough.
v50 “Jesus said to the woman, ‘Your faith has saved you; go in peace.’”
Peace comes from a deep security in him that supersedes the past and our current circumstances. When I lean into Jesus’ love and accept it, I have peace.
You are amazing! You will do great things because of 1Thes1:4 “[…] he has chosen you.” Believe that. Live in it and let it navigate your actions and decisions. This truth transforms us. It has freed me to be able to live in and enjoy the moment. Don’t worry about how the interview or project will turn out, or if it will lead to a promotion. Give your best and put your whole heart into it. Don’t worry if that friendship will turn into anything more; enjoy the friendship for what it is and allow God to teach you what he may. Don’t go into the workout feeling defeated, you are more than a conqueror. God’s love for us is eternal and it gives us great confidence if we accept it.
2 Corinthians 4:16 “Therefore we do not loose heart […] For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”