Am I Enough 5
Passage: Mark 10:17–10:33
Who are you trying to be? I don’t mean your name. How do you want people to know you?
When I ask this question to teens—and I do—I offer these options: Underachiever? Troublemaker? Disappointment? Scholar? Living right? Man of God? You are beyond your impressionable years. So your choices will hit closer to home. You know your hustle.
Has someone in your life already called you something else? Someone in your life who’s opinion of you holds a lot of weight? Have you heard someone call you: Stupid? Too much trouble? Going to be just like his older brother? No chance of becoming anything? Has what someone told you—perhaps when you were an impressionable teen—led you to make decisions about your life?
Or are there words you hear in your head and they come from you? And they are harsh words because they come from you?
Who are you trying to be? What is the source of your hustle?What is the source of your self-justification? Why is how you are leading your life not enough? Still not enough?
Let’s read this story from Mark 10.
Mark 10:17-22 - As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
18 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, you shall not defraud, honor your father and mother.’”
20 “Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”
21 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” 22 At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.
Look at this man’s hustle. You can see who he was trying to be. To be as perfect as he could be. And then trying to get approval from the great teacher. Maybe if he had Jesus’ approval it would be enough? Do you see it?
My favorite part of this story is v. 21. Jesus loved him and liked him. The CEV version has the word “liked.” You know that liked is a bit different than loved, right? It had little to do with his hustle.
It is Romans 5:8 again. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
This young man was always liked and loved. Yet he couldn’t stop his hustle. His hustle was his identity.There is so much weight to this.
One wrong move, one wrong decision—and you certainly can’t fail. You are going to let someone down.
Let’s talk about perfectionism for a bit. Teens, I want you to listen. Perfectionism is the belief that if we do things perfectly and look perfect, we can minimize or avoid the pain of blame, judgment, and shame. Perfectionism is a self-destructive and addictive belief system that if you can be perfect in everything, you can avoid or minimize feelings of judgment and shame. By being perfect you can control how people react to you so that it is always good.
Perfectionism is really a form of shame. This comes from research.
What a trap perfectionism is because it feels responsible. It is so hard to discern if you are going to disappoint someone or if you just think you will. This is so heavy to carry and you don’t know who to talk to about it because just talking to someone about it might disappoint someone.
Perfectionism is focused on others. Healthy striving is focused on you. Healthy striving is focused on you. Healthy striving is “how can I improve?” Perfectionism is “what will they think?” Can you begin to see the difference?
Because shame is at the root of this. Again. Shame is such a part of this religion of Enoughness. It is the drive behind your hustle. We are calling out shame today—yet again.
There is a difference between guilt and shame. I want you to see this.
Guilt = I did something bad
Shame = I am bad.
Guilt = “Great girl, really bad choice.”
Shame = “Bad girl.”
Guilt = I did something bad. I must get on the right path.
Shame = I can never be on that right path again.
Guilt = That was stupid.
Shame = I am stupid.
Guilt = A helper to keep us on the path.
Shame = A killer to keep us from being who God created us to be.
Guilt = I failed.
Shame = I am a failure.
Guilt = I am enough. I will do better next time.
Shame = You are not smart, thin, good, _______ enough. Ever.
That difference is a big one, right? Do you see how shame shapes our identity? And keeps us in a hustle?
Let’s look at this rich young man again. Do you see his list of doing? His list of validating his existence? His list of validating his faith? To not let anyone down? Wondering what will everyone think? Do you see his hustle?
Meanwhile Jesus loved him. Liked him. Because Jesus always did.
This is Romans 5:8 again. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. This is Luke 15:31 again. “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. This is the truth we can measure our lives on. We start here and then go forward. We are already approved.
Who are you trying to be? Has shame led you to labels you never wanted? Has shame caused you to say things to yourself that are harsh—and of course not true?
So how do you stop the hustle that your life has become? I actually have a list coming up for you. Ready?
Breathe. Remember you begin with approval from the God who created you the way you are.
Make a list of what and who is truly important to you. Take time to make that list. This list will help you make some hard decisions.
Declutter things around you that don’t bring you joy or aren’t useful.
Brave up and put some boundaries on those people who drive you to hustle? Dr. Brene’ Brown, who’ research we’ve been using in 2ndHour and did a book club has defined boundaries as BIG. BIG is “what Boundaries need to be in place for me to stay in my Integrity to make the most Generous assumptions about you.”
Identify the fear that is driving you. Remember that this fear is justified because we think it is making us a better person.
Put the phone away. Even for 30 minutes.
Do a social media detox.
Do some exercise. Something. Move this body of yours. It is good for the soul.
Find moments in nature. Nature has a way of making you feel small. Also you will feel awe--which you need at times.
Practice gratitude. Practice means do something. Gratitude is one of the best helps against shame because you see the good in your life.
Find a way to give back that is opposite of your hustle.
Something our teen boys learned just 2 weeks ago – “Failure will happen at some point. Failure does not mean you are unworthy of love and belonging. Failure means you tried because you believed you were worthy. We will teach you that failure is a life value because it means you tried.”
Be brave to change your life. Change is vulnerable and necessary.
There is no heart in the hustle, because the hustle drains you.Your soul is not being loved. It is armored up. And you are so tired.
Then there is this. It is a quote from a book that I love and it will be the source of a blog on our website tomorrow. The book is a parable called The Cureby John Lynch.
“No one told me that when I wear a mask, only my mask receives love.”
This is you being armored up. This is you hustling in your perfectionism. This is you and why you struggle with feeling like you are enough. This is you in pain behind that mask you are wearing.
The danger of hustling for our purpose is that it disconnects us from our core truth, our core values, and our core intentions. All placed inside of us from our beginning of time.
Instead our religion of Enoughness leads us to believe:
That we’re not good enough.
That we’re not worthy of love and connection.
That we should stay in toxic relationships and friendships. More on that next week.
That we don’t have permission to choose more for ourselves other than burn out, overwhelmedness, and stress.
Bronnie Ware who worked with the dying wrote a best-selling book, The Five Regrets of the Dying. Here are the top five regrets:
I wish I dared to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
I wish I’d dared to express my feelings.
I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
I wish that I had let myself be happier.
None of that sounds like the decisions you are making today to be who you think you should be. At this very moment don’t let that voice of shame creep in and tell you differently.
Who are you trying to be?
May you find your soul connection to the one true God who created you with a purpose to bless this planet. That purpose was breathed into you when you were conceived. It has been calling out to your soul ever since. You can be this person. You are enough. You were enough the minute you were born.