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more than enough

Last weekend our whole family watched a couple of The Bible shows.  I sat next to the man whom I adore and I could tell that he too was choking back tears.

Men who were brutally beaten.
Crucified upside down.
The faith and the courage of men who knew one thing with every fiber of their being.
No matter what they faced.  The trials. The persecution.  The pain. The suffering.
So simple.  Nothing else was needed, or wanted.  So freeing.
“I’ve learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I’m just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I’ve found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.”   
~~ Phil 4:10-13 (The Message)
I look around my own little world and I’m ashamed at how many times I have lost my way in this simple truth.  There are so many times when my Jesus has not been enough for me.
I have longed for the things of this world.
Financial security.
Earthly comforts.
A life without trials or challenges.
Yet, none of those things are the life that the Father calls us to. 
He calls us to take up our cross daily and FOLLOW HIM.
Whether that road leads to huge financial success, a hefty retirement fund, a house that is paid for, cars that never give in, and every blessing under heaven and earth.
Or, if FOLLOWING HIM means choosing that no matter what happens…
In his book, Radical, David Platt shares, “Radical obedience to Christ is not easy… It’s not comfort, not health, not wealth, and not prosperity in this world. Radical obedience to Christ risks losing all these things. But in the end, such risk finds its reward in Christ. And he is more than enough for us.”
“Radical obedience risks losing all these things.”
Goodness!  I wonder…are we, as a people who are called to give, to go, to share, and to pour ourselves out to the nations…are we really willing to risk losing it ALL?  Are we willing to lay it all down at the foot of the cross and tell Jesus, “You are ALL I need in this life?”
Is He really more than enough for us?  For me?
Is Jesus enough for us when the main bread provider in the family loses his job and God takes that family on a ridiculous journey of faith?
Is He enough for us when He chooses to take a little boy home way too soon?
Is God enough for us when disaster strikes and we lose everything?
And when people tear us down with their words and we feel like we can do no right, is Jesus more than enough in the hurt?
Is Jesus more than enough for us when life feels like it’s falling apart and there is nothing we can do to hold it together ourselves?
Is He more than enough for us when He calls us to lay our lives down, give up everything that we have and life as we know it and FOLLOW HIM no matter where He sends us?
I long to be at a point in my faith where I can truly look around and say with all my heart,

No matter what life brings my way.
No matter what God allows to happen or allows me to go through.
But, honestly, I’m not there yet.
While I was in South Africa last year I met a woman who touched my heart so deeply.  As the country has gone through much change over the years and many people have moved out of tin shacks and into very modest new cinder-block homes, this woman was still waiting for her new home—a place the size of a two car garage–but to her it was a long-awaited mansion.  
Through tears she told me how her alcoholic husband had left her for a much younger woman, and she was left to raise their two children alone (on the equivalent of $100 a month from working two jobs!). She had nothing!  They slept on a concrete floor and relied on neighbors to give them food when there simply wasn’t enough.  Each family member had two sets of clothes—one to wash and one to wear.  Yet, the joy!  The indescribable JOY that radiated from her. By worldly standards, she was as poor as they come.  But she knew the ONE who was MORE THAN ENOUGH.  The One who rescued her from the pit and breathed new life into her being.  “God is my husband now.  He takes care of my every need. What more could I want or need?” she told me.

She got it!  She understood what it means to fully KNOW that God is all we will ever need.
I have such a long way to go. I hold onto the things of this world.
I trust God when life is good…
…but take things into my own hands when the storms of life blow.
Sometimes…He’s just not enough for my wandering heart.
“But then I realize there is never going to be a day when I stand before God and He looks at me and says, ‘I wish you would have kept more for yourself.’ I’m confident that God will take care of me.” David Platt
Pressing on toward the finish line…

…willing to give it ALL away.
Because He is worthy.

“Why is everyone hungry for more? “More, more,” they say.
“More, more.”
I have God’s more-than-enough,
More joy in one ordinary day.”  ~~ Psalm 4 (The Message)