Good Enough Yet?

I am going to tell you something that you may already know in your head, but may not believe with your heart.

There is not a person you know – past or present – who does not struggle with their own humanness, on some level.  No matter how perfect you perceive one to be, if they walk this earth, they are made of dust and live in a human body.  We all have weaknesses, fears, insecurities, or areas in which we struggle – “Sin” of some sort.

I believe that our own “dark corners” can be most used against us, by us – to make us impotent as people and especially as Christians.  Somewhere along the way, we buy into this lie that until we “overcome” and get on top of whatever it is that can get on top of us, we have no right and are unworthy of “ministering” to others in any capacity.  This feeds the idea that the people who are professionally “ministering” to others must really be so much more spiritual and Holy than we are.

Wrong!  Everyone struggles!

We are all in need of the Redemption of the Cross and the Savior who created a relationship path to the Father for us.  We need to be reminded on a daily basis.  Where we err, is when we don’t think we really NEED the Father.  We think we have pretty much gotten it together.  

I hate to admit this, but when I was about 35 years of age, I was pretty self-righteous and just could not relate to people or women who could not get it together.  I read a little book called “The Final Quest” by Rick Joiner and it changed my life.  From it, I realized how much all of Heaven adores those who know how much they need Father God and are able to rest in his presence because they trust in the redemptive cross of Jesus Christ.  

But those who think they have it all together in themselves, literally let out a stench before all of Heaven.  WHOA!  Arrest me!  The Lord let me go through some things that convinced me I need Him as much as any human being and how much it was His grace that literally glued my life together and gave me any strength I have ever walked in.  Any moment of goodness or strength is because of the love of Father God.  

It also arrested me from ever being judgmental.  I understand how anyone can fall at any time.  Especially if they think they can’t!  That is why the Lord warns us not to judge, because whatever you think you are above, you are most vulnerable of falling under, because you have no guard up against it or awareness of your own humanness in that area.

When I refer to “ministering”, I do not mean (only) preaching in the pulpit.  For you see, as much as we have weaknesses, even more are we all blessed with strengths. And your world needs you today to give of your strengths!  Whatever is good in you and you love to do, whatever you have to offer, whatever you can do to bless another – you DO IT, you give and you bless others!   This is ministry, your ministry. Do not hold back because you are not a “worthy” and perfect vessel yet.

Everyone hates hypocrites.  But to be human, and give of all that is good in you, while learning to deal honestly with what is bad, is not being hypocritical.  Hypocrites are those who have tried to convince themselves, and everyone else, that they are perfect.  And that is what stinks – to all of Heaven and earth.

So, be true and honest with yourself and with Father God.  Recognize and acknowledge your struggles, submit them to the Father, in humility, so that “He may perfect His strength in your weakness”!  (One of my all-time favorite scriptures.)   And go ahead and bless the world around you with all that comes naturally for you – while you are still a work in progress.  

Just because there is something in you that you don’t like, do not let that hold you back from giving to others whatever you can to be a blessing.  Rather than being so SELF – CONSCIOUS, allow yourself to be more aware of others and how you can meet them.

Picture yourself going out to run errands for a few hours.  You have your “to do” list.  You are focused. You are definitely putting out the vibe that you are pre-occupied and not to be disturbed.  In fact, if people cut you off in traffic, or with their cart in the grocery store, you wish you could just scream at them.  Productive…but  “tightly wound.”  

What if you went out in public, list in hand, but very consciously aware that the whole world is uptight and worried about whatever is about to implode in our country and how to handle their own household, let alone the other big stuff.  What if you went out, purposing to make a difference, in the heart and spirit of everyone who crossed your path.  

Whether you are at the corner convenience store getting gas, or passing people in all the aisles in Wal-Mart, or anyone who comes in your 3-foot radius;  You look at them in the eyes and smile an encouraging smile that tells them THEY MATTER AND LIFE REALLY IS A GOOD THING! 

Remember when Jesus felt the “virtue” flow out of Him to the lady with the “issue of blood”.  That same “virtue” lives in you and is to be spilled out everywhere you go.  I will be honest with you – it is invigorating and exhausting at the same time.  You will be so blessed with the smiles that come back and seeing right then and there how you touch hearts.  It will do something special for you and remind you  – that it is the people who matter most and life is indeed a good thing!  

But depending on the neediness of people’s paths I cross, sometimes I can come home after a few hours in public and be just exhausted.  I have learned to recognize directly it is from what I poured out, often in a conversation to encourage someone who needed it.  But isn’t that how we are supposed to live every day?  “Poured out” for others – and in that we gain life!

Let’s all grow up together – in Him, encouraging one another, rather than ever holding ourselves, or anyone else back for that matter, with our judgments or condemnation.  And sometimes you will find – in helping others and “ministering” to them, you yourself are raised to a higher place.  

Remember – “There is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus!”

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3 Comments

  1. kyara said,

    May 18, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    Oh so true! Thank you, Toni, for forever reminding me of the things that I need to be reminded of.

  2. Wylie said,

    May 19, 2011 at 1:40 pm

    Toni,I love how you put things in words! I’ve thought some of these same things but never written about it. You have a gift! A gift of sharing God’s truth. I am so blessed to have you as a friend!

  3. Rima said,

    May 29, 2011 at 11:52 am

    Very well said! Thanks for this wonderful grace-and-life-filled reminder!


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