Scripture: Philippians 4:11-12
Journal: Is God enough for you? What does it do in you when you truly believe that he is? What does it do in you when you don’t truly believe it? Where are you in that journey right now?
Reflection: I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 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 I am well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” (Philippians 4:11-12, NIV)
God is enough. He is everything we need. Evidently Paul learned this, although it probably didn’t come easy. Paul knew that circumstances didn’t determine his life, but God did. And if God determines everything about our lives, then we don’t need circumstances to be pleasant, convenient, comfortable, or favorable. That’s how Paul could write, “I have learned the secret of being content whatever the circumstances.” The Greek word used here (in Phil. 4:11) is autarkēs, which means sufficient or enough. Thus, we are only able to be truly content when we really believe that God is enough.
Unfortunately, we don’t always fully believe that. In fact, sometimes we don’t even believe it a little bit. And it has an enormous impact on how we live our lives. If we do not really believe that God is enough, then we have to turn to ourselves, or to others, to fill in the gaps. That’s where it gets really ugly. We become anxious and angry and frustrated, or depressed and driven and demanding. We become the very worst version of ourselves.
But if we can ever get to the point where we truly believe that God is enough, then we can rest in his enough-ness. His enough-ness, and not that of ourselves or our circumstances, allows us to truly trust in him. If God is really enough, then we don’t have to be. And we do not have to demand that others be enough for us. In fact, it frees us up to be able to love them, rather than manipulate love out of them. If God is enough, then whatever others have to offer us—if anything—is enough because we are not depending on them for our sense of well-being. If God is enough, then we have enough—however much or little that may be. And if God is enough, then we are enough in him. It is his love alone that determines our value and our worth. We do not have to jockey and posture and perform for everyone. Our identity is securely rooted in him; it is not tied to what we do, what we have, or how we look.
So I pray that, this very day, we will all get to know God’s enough-ness. For until we get to know him, really know him, we never will know how enough he really is.
Closing Prayer: God, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing. (Psalm 23:1, The Message)