27 Oct “When Jesus is Not Enough”
“When Jesus is Not Enough”
Two years in our marriage, my wife Nikki and I wanted to have a baby so badly, but couldn’t conceive. Somehow we had this unreal expectation that having a baby was as easy as 1-2-3. We thought all we had to do was decide to have a baby, try, and voilà, she gets pregnant! But obviously that wasn’t the case. The long wait, the little control that we had in our situation, the comparison with others, the unmet expectations, the constant inquiry “when are you going to have a baby” – all these robbed us of joy.
“Everybody is having a baby!”
“How come those who don’t want to get pregnant do, and how come I, who want it so much, can’t!”
“Why is God not giving us what we want?”
These were our typical conversations.
Eventually however, Nikki and I saw the elusive two lines on her home pregnancy test. We are finally having a baby! Excited and anxious at the same time, we scheduled a trip to the doctor as soon as possible. “Doc! So when is my wife giving birth?” I elatedly asked. But the doctor impassively responded, “I see signs of pregnancy, but let us wait until the pregnancy is viable.”
“Viable? Viable?” What does that even mean?!
A couple more ultrasounds and visits to the doctor met us with more joy-robbing news. “The baby’s heart beat is slow.” “Let us hope it improves.” They said.
Then it happened. I was out giving a whole day talk in one of the universities, while my wife scheduled another ultrasound. I gave her a call during lunch to ask how it went. I was met with silence, then followed by, “No heart beat.” These were her only words.
“I’m begging off from the rest of the talk, and I’m going to you right now!” I said.
But just wanting to be by herself, she replied, “No, finish your talk, I’ll just see you later.”
I came home that afternoon and went straight to our room where I found my wife curled up in bed crying. I sat beside her, and did not speak. What else can I do? I just tried to be there. When she has exhausted her tears, I was overcome with a conviction to ask her, actually, to ask both of us…
“Honey, if we never have a baby… is Jesus enough?”
She cried some more. I cried with her. And together we sought to answer the question before us, “is Jesus really enough?”
Since then, God brought us through a journey of not only responding to this question, but embracing the answer, that yes He is. Something we have always known but often do not take to heart
Sometimes we feel that Jesus is not enough in our lives. We feel that in order to be happy we need Jesus plus something else – maybe Jesus plus children, or Jesus plus a promotion at work, or Jesus plus marriage, and on and on our list goes.
Jesus reminds us that things in this world perish (Matthew 6:19-21). Possessions, people, popularity, positions, etc. all have one thing in common, they all perish. We may do our best to preserve or keep them but it is simply a reality, that everything in this world can only last so long.
Wherever we invest our time, our resources, our efforts, and whatever else is valuable to us, our heart will always follow that. And if the things we hold so dear perish, or if the things we look forward to never come, then our hearts are left wanting, and we find ourselves robbed of joy.
This does not mean that we should not invest in relationships, nor be excellent in our careers, or be good stewards of what God has given us. We, however should always be reminded to look beyond these things, and to anchor our joy in Jesus alone.
Because in Jesus,
… we find peace (John 16:33),
… we find rest (Matthew 11:28),
… we find hope (1 Peter 1:3),
… we find forgiveness (1 John 1:9)
… we find grace (2 Corinthians 12:9),
… we find satisfaction (John 4:13-14),
… we find provisions (Philippians 4:19),
… we find joy (John 15:11).
In Jesus there is so much more, and yes, we can indeed say, Jesus is enough.