“It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life, for I am no better than my fathers.”
(1 Kings 19:4 ESV)
We men are generally supposed to be strong and provide for our families. There is an unspoken but well understood code which prohibits showing or speaking of weakness or insecurity — such feelings should be masked with bravado.
The truth is that I have spent much of my married life and certainly my time as a father seriously doubting if I measure up.
Am I enough of a husband?
Am I enough of a father?
Enough of a man?
We don’t say such things out loud, but the apprehension is always there. Seeing the task before me, I know I do not measure up. Other men earn more and provide better for their wife and children. Other men are more helpful to their wives. Other men are more tender fathers, more consistent in discipline and better at teaching their children about Jesus.
Like Elijah I look at myself and see the truth — I am no better than my father, or his father. Some might reply that “of course you are enough”. They do not know the truth. I know it. God knows it.
I am a failure at what really matters. I am not enough.
God accepts this and He has done what is necessary to make up the difference between my not enough, and what is enough. The difference is Christ. God knows the truth, He doesn’t offer platitudes, He offered His Son.
Unfortunately the world and other people don’t always see this. Where it gets hard is when my wife sees that I am not enough, does she lie to herself? Or does she see Jesus making up the shortfall? Do my children see my faults and then see Christ making the difference?
Sorry, no answers in this post, only questions.
(I overran the stop timer today!)