Heaviness. That’s the only word I can think of to describe it. It’s that feeling that shows up unexpectedly every so often. Sometimes it hangs around for awhile, stealing motivation, bringing thoughts of self-doubt and self-loathing with it. I never expect it when it comes, but it shows up enough that I should be able to silence it easily. Instead, I find myself wasting whole days at a time dealing with this darkness. This sadness. This unwelcome companion.
There’s a secret lie we fight to silence. It’s not really secret, we just don’t talk about it. We hold in our sadness and our darkness and we don’t let anyone see the fear and the doubt. It can consume us, eat away at our dreams and goals, maybe even destroy us.
It’s the lie of unworthiness.
It’s the lie that we’re not enough. Will never be enough. There will always be someone better, someone a little more patient, a lot funnier. Someone whose jeans fit better, whose hair doesn’t frizz, who always says the perfect thing at the perfect time. Someone who doesn’t have to fight for every word she writes or fumble her way around a camera to get one decent picture. Someone who is a better friend, a more loving wife, a more devoted mother.
So if there’s always going to be someone better than me, what’s the point in trying? Am I worthy of this life I have if there’s someone else who could live it better?
I’m sitting at a ranch right now. My kids are taking horseback riding lessons and I get a few hours to sit and watch and soak up the sights and smells of the farm. As I look out over this pasture with it’s 21 horses, I can’t help but wonder at the beauty of each horse. They’re all similar: each has four legs, a mane and a tail; they’re all eating grass. They do similar things: trot, canter, flick flies off their bodies. And yet, they’re all so different. Some are bigger and more powerful. Some are patient and gentle. They all have different coloring and patterns. They sound different. But each one is beautiful to me. Beautiful in it’s own way and maybe in it’s own time.
You see, the fact that there will always be someone better than us at something may be true, but it’s not The Truth.
The Truth says we are made in the image of God.
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27
The Truth says God created, knit together, every single one of us and The Truth says we are fully known by the author of life itself.
“Oh yes, you shaped me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God— you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something.” Psalm 139: 13-16 MSG
And if we’ve been created by The Creator, made in His very likeness, then we ARE worthy because He is worthy. We are enough because HE is enough. We are certainly not God, but He is in us, residing with us, healing the brokenness and bringing light to the dark places. He knows every bit of us. Every quirk, every dream and desire, every yearning and stirring of the soul.
So when this heaviness comes, this feeling of unworthiness, we can rest in knowing that God’s got ahold of us. He always has. He sees the triumphs and the joys, the moments of overcoming and victory, but He also knows every doubt, every struggle, every “less than” feeling. And if we pay attention, He shows us that we are loved, cherished, enough, and oh, so worthy.