Let me start off this post by saying, no, I don’t think it’s a sin to be unhappy…necessarily.
But that just barely scratches the surface of what I wanted to share with you.
You see, we’ve been trekking through a lot of thoughts and ideas about fear and disappointment on this blog. And we’ve had good reason, because this life is sometimes really hard and uncomfortable. But I know there is more to this life than living in disappointment and fear.
Still, that’s the place I’ve been living in for a while. Fear of being disappointed. Being disappointed because of fear. Mostly just wishing things could be different when I encounter something I don’t like, and waiting for things to one day magically change.
What if they don’t? What if they never change?
It’s a looming thought we’ve probably all entertained.
Why can’t God be enough?
I’ve asked myself this question specifically off and on these past few years. I want God to be enough. I want to receive what He’s given me and not perpetually live in a state demanding more.
Yet I always end up back in a place where it feels like even if I can find joy in this moment, in the future, I won’t ever be happy unless things change.
I can’t be happy if God doesn’t take away the pain.
I can’t be happy if God will not heal.
I can’t be happy if God doesn’t change my circumstances.
I can’t be happy if God doesn’t fix my problems.
I can’t be happy if God doesn’t let me accomplish all my dreams and goals.
I can’t be happy if God never allows me to do any of the things I hope to do in my life.
When I say I can’t be happy, or believe disappointment will always ever plague me if I don’t get these things, what I’m really saying is that I don’t believe He will be enough unless I have these things, too.
God + worldly things = everything I need.
And that’s not how it works. That is not how we are wired. That’s not what God has told us is true in His Word. That is not the pathway to LIFE or joy or hope.
It’s easy to say He’s enough when we have everything in addition to Him. It’s a lot harder when we’re still waiting and wondering what’s coming down the road, or wondering what it will look and feel like to nurse the wounds of one closed door after another for an indefinite number of years.
He is all we need – we sing it in our hymns and talk about it in our churches. But do we really believe it? If we had nothing? If everything we did have was taken away? If we’re never given the things we truly desire?
Is He enough? Do we trust He will bring us joy and even help us dare to feel a glimmer of happiness in the life He has placed us in? Will we trust He will provide everything we need in order to love that life?
The world would balk at the idea. How can we love what we never wanted?
And a whole lot of patience and step-by-step direction from the Lord.
I’m still learning what that means, to love what I have even if it’s not what I wanted, much less figuring out what it looks like.
Maybe it’s not a sin to feel pain and discontentment, or struggle to reconcile the losses. It’s not a sin to feel the weight of disappointment or carry grief with us from the wounds we’ve experienced. Hurt is not wrong.
But I think it is wrong to believe His plans for us are made of disappointment and nothing more. It’s wrong to believe we can never understand joy without also fulfilling temporary longings. It’s wrong to reconstruct our perspective through the lens of thoughts and fears which echo from our heart that says, I don’t believe You’re enough, instead of calling out the lie.
What we feel doesn’t define what is true.
So I’m leaning to be honest, and I’m learning to confront and repent from those raw feelings. We’re not guaranteed anything on this earth except that He WILL be enough, even if we can’t see or feel it in the moment. He’ll be enough even when we don’t realize He is. He’ll be enough even when we think there’s no hope.