Is God Enough?
by Michael Barrett
I know, I know, seems like a silly question, doesn’t it? And every self-respecting believer will likely hurl the expected answer immediately at the question. The kinds of answers we should anticipate would include the following list:
- Absolutely God is enough!
- Always and all of the time!
- God is all I need.
- God is my everything.
- God is my life.
- God is always enough for me!
Sounds good, doesn’t it? And, of course, we all know that of a certainty God is truly enough for us, no matter what the circumstance or condition that we find ourselves in or coming up against. However, we must remember that the bunch that gives the quick answer, such as is listed above, is the same bunch that says:
- I’m too blessed to be stressed.
- I am always the head and not the tail. Always above only and not beneath.
- I have the victory that overcomes the world.
- I am a world changer, an earth shaker, a demon chaser, a mega-faith, multi-gifted, highly anointed, super discerning, Spirit-filled man (or woman) of God. Nothing can hold me back, nothing can get me down, nobody can keep me from believing, receiving and experiencing all of God’s best. I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me. And on and on they (and we, at times) drone.
I am now nearing 70 years of age. I have been around the block. I know some things. I have walked with the Lord since I was saved at the age of 20. I consider myself relatively mature, though I continue to seek the Lord, endeavoring to learn and grow in His grace and wisdom. But in all this experience, I continue to observe that so many of our brothers and sisters continue to struggle with what many, maybe most, would refer to as, “the basics.” In Hebrews 6:1-3, we find a profound set of fundamentals that make up the prerequisite for true maturity. “Therefore, leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. And this will we do, if God permit.”
We must at this point be honest with ourselves and with one another. “Let us go on unto perfection” and “not laying again the foundation” pre-require and pre-suppose that, in fact, foundation has been laid. And, that it has been laid in such a way so that it has produced a strength and security in the believer, so as to produce a foundation sufficient to uphold and withstand the building on a life of maturity and, even, as the Scripture states, perfection.
At this juncture lets tie all of this into the theme of this writing, “Is God Enough?” I find that I am personally often brought back to this benchmark fundamental. You know, fundamental, like, “don’t take your eye off of the ball.” Do you ever outgrow the fundamentals? I don’t think so. I think that the fundamentals, not semantically, but experientially, are the measure of an authentic Christian life. So, it is not uncommon, when the saints are grasping for goose-bumps on their goose-bumps, or swinging from the chandeliers, or clamoring for some new revelation, or drooling with anticipation of the new glory move of God, or whatever, that, right smack dab in the big middle of our man-made feel good, the Lord asks us a question like, “am I enough for you.” And, so maybe that’s not you, with goose bumps, or chandelier swinging, or running here and there looking for the next new thing. Maybe you’re the one who is habitually navel-gazing, never satisfied, always looking for your feel good somewhere out there, here or there, fairly devoid of true contentment, and paying a premium for it in that whole process with the high cost of a lack of the abiding and sustaining peace of God.
And before you push back or get mad at me, let me just say, that my primary target audience for this written piece is me! I am writing this as a reminder that, though I personally have no interest in chandelier swinging, am no longer impressed with the claim of goose-bumps on our goose-bumps and think I have a fairly good grasp of what the move of God looks like in this season, I can be pulled into a variety of distractions and sub-standard, non-kingdom advancing processes periodically. So, it is from that awareness that I want to hold myself accountable to answer the question that I am posing in this article. Is God enough? Is God enough for me?? And, whether we like it or not, that question merits an honesty and a soberness that demands from us an approach that brings the currency of the fear of the Lord and a humility indicative of a true son of our Father. Whether you or me, this question is fundamental!
I was driving to a conference in August of 2016 at which I was to be one of the speakers. I was alone on the drive when I had the strong impression to listen again to a message that I had listened to at least a couple of times previously (maybe three times). I have found that when I am directed by the Lord to re-listen to something, that it means one of two things - firstly, that there was something in the message that I was intended to get that I missed, or secondly that there was something in the message that I really got when I heard it, but that understanding is not being applied practically to my current experience. I believe that everything that the Lord gives us by way of understanding is given to us to bring us into an experience (and if it doesn’t, it will certainly serve to make us more religious!). The things that we are given are meant to arm and equip us for the experiences of life. However, life has a way of beating against the foundation that God has given us, and sometimes with such vehemence that the result is that we get focused on the experience and forget the One who is holding us by our hand in the midst of the experience.
I turned the message on and listened, and listened, and then I heard what I was supposed to hear on that day. When in the message the preacher talked to God about being upset at Him because of a set of failed expectations he was experiencing on an international mission trip, it was the answer that the Lord gave the preacher that I needed to be reminded of. The preacher said that the Lord said to him (in response to the preacher’s complaint to God about feeling that God had deceived him), “You are fundamentally mistaken about why I sent you here. I didn’t send you here for them, and I didn’t send you here for you. I sent you here for Me.” And it was there, in the car, on that drive alone, that the Lord said to me, “I’m not sending you (where He was sending me) for them, and I’m not sending you for you. I’m sending you for Me. Am I enough for you?” Beloved, I had to pull the car off the highway. That question wrecked me. But it was in the process of the adjustments that my Father’s grace made in me at that moment that caused me to see how worked up I was about things other than Him!! Me, them, this, that, what it is, what it might be, what it might not be, etc. You can see what a trap all of that is. It is designed to distract us and cause us to lose sight of what the whole exercise is about anyway. We sing about it, preach about it, testify about it, talk about it – but the rubber actually meets the road when the Lord calls upon us to practically live in it and live out of it! Really!!
This question, “Is God enough” is so completely fundamental to all of our motives and actions. Jesus only did what He saw His Father doing (John 5:19). And His reward was always already with Him (Isaiah 62:11). Jesus had His reward with Him! He refused to trade down; to be duped into believing that He could find true fulfillment and contentment in anyone or anything other than the Father! You too. Me too.
Let us, from this day and for all of the days of our lives, remember that God is always, on every occasion, truly enough for us!! I commend you to God and to the word of His grace so that you can be built up and obtain the inheritance prepared for you by your Father. May the peace of God abound to you and attend you in every way! Remember dear one, God is truly always enough!!