Regular readers know that I try to write about things about which we all have a mutual interest. Recently I have been writing about the wonderful state of Texas and her majestic beauties. I love this place and have called it home now for over a decade.
Today’s column is more serious to me, and hopefully, to you as well. I have had occasion to deal with three situations in the last few days that made me stop and think about what is truly enough. That word is loaded with more meaning than I ever knew possible. What is enough to you? Rightfully, you should ask, “What is the area or the scope of the subject?” And yes, I’ve been thinking about a lot of “enoughs” in my own life.
For clarity’s sake, enough is defined generally as “ adequate for the want or need; sufficient for the purpose or to satisfy desire, as in ‘enough water to drink’; ‘noise enough to wake the dead.’”
I remember that Jesus asked one of my favorite Bible characters, the apostle Peter, “Do you love me enough?” Peter, of course, in his haste and often too-quick responses, said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.” He proved later that he did love the Lord, but not enough to control his temper or his actions toward others. Later in the apostle’s life, he did surrender and give his life to proving that he did love the Lord enough to do His will, and he reached many with the gospel message. I see many of my friends in the actions of Peter, and to be totally honest, I often see his reactions in my life. Someone says something we don’t like about a friend or relative, and we take up the offense and jump right into the fray, often saying things we do not mean or really feel in our hearts. We react before we have had time to think, causing more harm and damage, even though our hearts and motives were perhaps right in the beginning.I see young parents struggling with having the time and the energy to give their children “enough” to help train them in the way they should go. It is easier to allow someone else – or something else – to do the babysitting and instructing, and we all hope that somehow it works out for their good and the well being of those around them. I see couples and know some very well that are not giving “enough” to each other. Both often work to keep the family in the house they have chosen, food on the table, and educations progressing. Time is a valuable commodity and by the time all of the necessary chores are done, bills paid and food cooked, there is nothing left to give to anyone.
I have been praying for a young lady whom I love very much who is in a relationship that has often troubled me. She loves the fine young man and I believe he loves her, but he is a very busy man, intrigued with making money, closing deals and making his mark on the world. He’s handsome, aggressive in business, often travels, and is a good person, but my heart begs the question, “Will he ever be able to give her ‘enough’?” Being married to a man or a woman who cannot or will not give “enough” is a tough ride to take. It is often hurtful to be ignored, set aside, put in second place, and yet, try to go on with life as if all is well.
I wonder if those caught in situations like these even know that they are not giving or are not capable of giving “enough?” Do they care? Or, is it really the lack of time and energy? I want to be remembered for being a caring person, a good friend, and one who has honestly tried to give “enough” to all those around me. Each of us must probe our own hearts and declare what the “enoughs” are in our lives. I cannot dictate yours and you cannot dictate mine, but somehow in the depths of our heart, we know what they are. I don’t want to be remembered for spending the most money, being first in everything, taking the fanciest trip, drinking the most beer, or winning the most hands.
If this column does nothing else this week, will you at least take the time to consider the “enoughs” in your own life and see if you are lacking in any that really matter? I’ve been doing this well before I sat down to write these words and I found several areas in which I want to improve — while I still have the time and energy.
Brenda Cannon Henley can be reached at (409) 781-8788 or at brendacannonhenley [at] yahoo [dot] com.