Sunday’s post – Always onward and upward – included the line “Don’t settle, don’t think you have done enough – it’s a trap! ” Shortly after I finished penning (keying?) that, I read an email from one of you about the idea of enough:
“I’d be interested in your thoughts, perhaps as a blog post about the concept of “Enough” I hear that word bandied about as a justification for doing “enough”, as well as “not being enough” The term is completely relative, but the concept seems to permeate many aspects of relationships.”
What is enough, and what is not? As the gentleman above said, it’s completely relative. In large part, it depends on how you define “enough”. Does it mean “as much as needed”, or does it mean “the minimum to get by”. The second is clearly neither loving nor generous. When I think of all God has done for me, I don’t think of it in terms of the bare minimum; He is “able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think” and He came that we “may have life, and have it abundantly”. God is not about “enough”.
To me, enough is often an excuse or justification. Sometimes it comes from someone else “You’ve done enough”. There certainly are times when one’s efforts are more than sufficient, but too often well-meaning folks use this phrase to let a friend off the hook. I wonder how many marriages might have survived if no one had told one spouse they had done enough.
On the other hand, I don’t want anyone living in despair, thinking they have never “done enough”. I’ve seen men and women nearly kill themselves to save their marriage be told they did not “do enough”. I also know husbands and wives try to control each other with claims not enough has been done. The implication, sometimes the statement, is if you had done a bit more, it would have been enough for me to do what you want me to do.
I see marriage as a life-long journey. There is no arriving; only growing. Perfection is the direction, but we know we will never get there – and that’s okay. There are seasons of hard work, and seasons of being more relaxed. There is always more we could do, but not always something we must do right now.