“We are all inadequate, Mama…”


The words sliced through me.


I paused my carrying on.


Of course.

We all are.



My college girl had called to talk

and the conversation had turned heavy.

I was struggling

and it was late

and emotions seemed to be spilling over unwanted.


I was struggling with a weight I shouldn’t have been carrying

listening to voices that spoke

of my lack of worth

lack of strength

lack of knowledge

lack of adequacy….

for being the person He called me to be

in ministry

in family

in life.


I poured out my heart to my daughter all grown.

She listened to it all

including the part where I said,

“I just feel so inadequate in this role sometimes….”


Then the words I didn’t expect.


“We are all inadequate, Mama….”




“It’s only through God that we can do any of this.”


I realized that I had been wallowing in a cess pool of emotion

about how I wasn’t measuring up.

I had been thinking

and processing

and assessing


my abilities

my personality

my mistakes





It wasn’t about me

and I had lost sight of that.


All throughout Scripture the Lord had shown me

how He works through the weak

the unlikely

the small

the unsure

the messed up

the perfectly inadequate human

who surrendered to His plans


and said YES


to the One who does the impossible

the miraculous

the detailed

the amazing

the over and above adequate!


And uses the inadequate.


Because that’s what He does.


He is God

and I am not

and as long as I surrender

and surrender again

and surrender again

to His remarkable Spirit leading me,

then His role in me

is more than adequate.


Sometimes things are reversed

and the child is the parent

and the parent is the child.

And sometimes wisdom comes from a young heart,

fresh and true.


I won’t soon forget these words of wisdom.


And I will speak them back to her


when the voices

that are not His

tell her she is inadequate.

– Susie Stewart




Photos taken by Susie Stewart