It happened again! That thought in the back of my mind that just won’t stay away…you know the one, you are not good enough! I don’t know where it comes from but it has been with me for years and years, that old sinking feeling that no matter what I do I am not good enough.
The first time I really remember feeling that I was not good enough and that my effort was not good enough was while in elementary school. I remember being invited to a birthday party for a classmate and I was so excited about going. I already knew that I would wear my very best dress and I would have a gift wrapped nicely to give to the little girl who was having a birthday party. I rode my bike across town with the gift in the basket of my bike and just as I was arriving in the yard I saw another little girl going inside for the party. She was dressed in a store-bought dress and I was in a homemade dress. She had on socks with lovely lace ruffles sewn around the edges and she wore dress shoes. I knew instantly that I was not good enough to enter that house and attend the party. I waited until the door closed and then I took the gift and slowly walked to the door and rang the doorbell. I explained to the girl’s mother who answered the door that I was not able to stay for the party however I wanted to drop the gift off for my classmate. The Mom tried to coax me into the home but I was too ashamed of my dress to go to my classmate’s ninth birthday party. As I rode my bike home and tears streaming down my face it came to me that I was not good enough to be at the party. I lived on the poor side of town, my parents both worked at a time when most Mom’s stayed home, my house was rented and not owned, my dress was homemade and my shoes came from the second-hand thrift store. I knew my place was not at my classmate’s party.
I never attended any parties I was invited to again until I had to stay all night at a slumber party while in high school. It was a party given in honor of all the girls who were selected for all-state band or chorus and I was one that had been chosen. I knew that I had to go because my Mom had said that I would be delighted to be there. She obviously didn’t know about that voice in the back of my head that said I was not good enough and I wasn’t going to be the one to tell her! I knew that I didn’t fit in the moment my parents dropped me off at the home the party was to take place. What I remember most about that night was the vast distance between the other girls and me. I didn’t care as much about my looks as they did, oh don’t get me wrong, I wanted to look nice, but I didn’t pamper myself as they did. I felt miserable but put my best face forward and I think I hid my feelings well.
When I got married we were broke and I knew that we would be broke for a long time because we were students. I felt more comfortable with being broke than I did when we began to have some money and nice things. I remember the first time I realized that my lifestyle was changing and my status in life was changing from being a poor student’s wife to a military officer’s wife. I rose to the challenge and I learned all I could about military etiquette and rank and status. There was a special order that was to be followed and I didn’t want to make any mistakes. I actually cooked dinner and served a three star general as a second lieutenants’ wife! That was never heard of at that time but I did! All the time I felt that same chant in the back of my head that I was not good enough.
Years later after the divorce I was taking college classes and I had to battle the old well-worn attitude that I was not good enough. Every time I got an A I felt it was not deserved, even though I had spent hours and hours preparing my studies. When I graduated cum laude I felt like the college must have made a mistake and that I couldn’t possibly be good enough to graduate with such honors. When I completed a master’s degree I questioned if my college was really a good college because they granted me a Master’s Degree! I mean I had worked very hard to achieve good grades but I thought that my excelling was because my university was no good! That was how my head felt and that was when I said enough is enough!
I am good enough! I am good enough because I have lived sixty years on this earth and achieved more than most and I should realize that I am good enough. I am good enough because I follow Jesus Christ and He has validated me as one of His which makes me good enough! I am good enough because I am a princess of God! I am good enough and the lie that I have believed all these years, that lie that has driven me to the point of frustration on more than one occasion is a lie. That lie that comes naturally through the course of divorce that says no wonder you are divorced because you are not good enough is still a lie! I am good enough! I was good enough as a child, I was good enough as a teenager and I am certainly good enough as an adult!
Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:7-10, (New International Version or NIV).
Like the Apostle Paul, I have battled a weakness, a torment from Satan, that I am not good enough. I became good enough the day I accepted Christ as my Savior and was baptized at age eight! I made the commitment to be a follower of Jesus Christ on that day and I have never regretted that decision. As a young college student we were challenged to find a life verse and I adopted the best one of all Philippians 4:13. I have leaned upon that verse more than any other verse in scripture and I am thankful that God has seen me through good times and bad. I have lived as Paul describes, through good times and not so good times.
I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:12-13, (NIV).
Strength is necessary when battling the lie that I am not good enough. I find this verse such a help during the heat of battle. I know that without God, without Jesus Christ I am not good enough but praise God that Jesus came to earth as a babe, lived to adulthood and then died on a cross for my sins, rose again to be victorious over death and is waiting for me where we will spend eternity together. I am good enough because Christ made me good enough. He wants you to be with us in eternity, are you ready? Have you answered His call?
Until next time…Katherine