When You Feel Unworthy

I slammed the bathroom door and exhaled loudly.

Doubt and defeat assailed me.

My husband looked up from shaving. I knew he’d heard the harsh words between my kids and I. The battle would be forgotten, but not the words. I beat myself up: why do I engage? Why don’t I just walk away…?

It was a rough Sunday morning with a whiny preschooler refusing her clothes, an emotional tween outburst, and an easily distracted son still not dressed for church, not to mention the constant sibling arguing and the mom who’d had enough, biting off every head she could find.

I’m not going to lie:  it was all very ugly.

My thoughts immediately went to our upcoming trip to Africa in just three weeks.  With slumped shoulders, I put words to doubts: Why are we going to Africa? Why does God want us? We aren’t worthy of this.

I’m not worthy of the task before me. I have no business leading a non-profit. I am terribly inadequate and not qualified to travel across the globe with my family to help at Mercy House.

I am prone to sin. Prone to wander, Lord I feel it:

And after I dumped that verbal mess on my husband, he pulled me close and said, “Good, that’s exactly how you should feel. We aren’t worthy. We are inadequate. We are nothing without Jesus.

But He is worthy. He is adequate. He is everything.

He will go before us, work through us, use our unworthy mess of a family to accomplish His purpose.”

And then I recognized the attacker, the one who seeks to destroy my soul and uses my own weaknesses to try and accomplish it. The one who uses the people I love the most to discourage me the greatest, the evil one whispering “Kristen, you aren’t worthy of this calling,” into my ear.

I closed my eyes and listened to my wise husband. I acknowledged the spiritual war raging and I remembered the girl I love across the ocean waiting for me. I offered it all to Him. I will not be defeated by doubt and fear.

When I feel unworthy, it’s probably because I am.

But I’m leaning heavily on the One who is worthy.



  1. 1


    Kristen, thank you for your honesty and post today. As Moms, we all tend to run tines times like these and feel that horrible feeling of defeat.

    Only God can see us through.

  2. 2

    Rachel P says

    I’ve been reading your blog for about a month now and have enjoyed it but haven’t felt compelled to comment until now. What a beautiful post. Sweet and simple. Thank you.

  3. 3


    I was so defeated today that I didn’t go to church, none of us did. I’m slowly getting back up there but sometimes it just takes time. Thanks for sharing

  4. 7


    i feel as if i’m reading my own words here… except better written. :)

    “Why are we going to Africa? Why does God want us? We aren’t worthy of this.”
    amen, sister.

    like i just said on my blog today, for some reason, God has called us to this crazy life. and if this is where He’s called us, He’s sure enough going to give us what it takes to do His work.

    it’s not us. it’s Him.

    ummm, i can’t wait to hug you.
    i think we’re going to be great real-life friends. :)

  5. 8


    This post is so touching. I’m relieved to read these words you wrote: “And then I recognized the attacker, the one who seeks to destroy my soul and uses my own weaknesses to try and accomplish it.”

    All of us feel unworthy (and we are unworthy), but to recognize the attacker is what we need to do. And then we need to lean on Him and carry on.

    Absolutely beautiful post.

  6. 9


    Your post seriously couldn’t have come at a better time! My husband is leaving for a week long mission trip in the morning—today has been one attack after another!!! We’ve had terrible storms today, physically and emotionally—the thunder and lightning is easier to take than this soul upheaval!

  7. 10

    Jessica says

    Kristen, thank you for sharing this. I have never incurred so much spiritual warfare as I have since I have become a mom. I will remember this post and the wisdom gained as I face a new week w 3 of my 4 sick, a baby shower to host this Saturday, homeschooling to accomplish & a 12hour shift on Tuesday. I’ll be chanting “not on my strength, but Your’s alone” all week!

  8. 11

    Erin says

    This was exactly what I needed to hear. I had a very similar day yesterday. I so appreciate your honesty and your willingness to be used by Him. Thank you so much for reminding me that He wants me to depend on Him!

  9. 12


    I so needed to read this today. While I am not going to Africa, I do have significant challenges with three special needs kids. This week has been particularly hard and overwhelming. I have doubted myself again and again and again – and found myself yelling at my one child who we are not supposed to yell at because she just doesn’t get it.

    What this post reminded me of was that doubt never comes from our Father in Heaven. Doubt comes from the temptor. He wants us to doubt ourselves, our strength, our testimonies. Because if he can work that tiny sliver of doubt into us, he knows he can do so much more.

    So we must stand strong, be brave, and know that through Christ all things are possible.

  10. 13


    What a blessing! A godly husband who “washes with the Word” and faithfully provides a conduit of His Love for YOU!! Your transparent heart and humble spirit bring Him glory!! Thank you for the words of your testimony! If it were up to us, oh my! But, it is NOT–it is ALL Him! And is this impatient-imperfect-impossible mom/wife thankful!!!! Whew!

  11. 14

    Crystal says

    We’ve all been there. And you are so right. And we so cannot wait to hear all the good things that are going to come of this trip!

  12. 15


    HE fell like rain as I read this! I can’t even put into words all the reasons why and what this meant to me….
    Thank you for sharing your heart. It has blessed me…and I think it’s beautiful and awesome that you are going to Africa in 3 weeks! God Bless you!
    He is worthy. He is adequate. He is everything.~AMEN!

  13. 16


    that is my favorite hymn because I too, am prone to wander, but aren’t we all? And it is GRACE that sees us through. Sweet Kristen, what a light and a blessing you are, it takes courage to air your dirty laundry for all the world, to show the ugly sin mess that is in all of us. Thank God for his beautiful grace that will see us through!

  14. 17


    Oh I can so relate to the yelling and then feeling so defeated afterwards, we have had a week like that and it has taken me all this time to realise it was spiritual!! I am following God’s call to homeschool my son and as the registration visit approaches next week the doubts are flying in my mind and it feels like ‘all hell has broken loose’ in my house, because it has, I forgot that those doubts are lies from the pit of hell and should be dealt with accordingly!! Thank you :-) I look forward to reading more of your blog and your trip to Africa!

  15. 18

    Melanie says

    Wonderful! What a blessing to read your blog entry this morning.

    You quoted my favorite hymn. My friend and I were just discussing our propensity as moms to look at all the other moms around us and think that they are perfect and we are failing and how wrong and shortsighted that way of thinking is. Thanks for sharing the truth. :-)

  16. 19


    Thank you for giving credit where it is do. I love that my husband can step back and remind me that SATAN is not in charge of our lives and we need to not let him control it.
    Praying for you over the next few weeks. Praying things will fall in place as you pack and get ready. Praising that you are available to go, that you have opened your heart to follow God’s leading.
    By the way, I often get half way to church and have to take a pause because I can not go to church after a rough morning. I want us to walk in with open hearts and not with anger towards each other

  17. 21


    Oh, Kristen! Thank you for sharing. I have been feeling this way so much lately and actually wondered last week if you ever do! Thank you for being humble enough to share. I can’t tell you how much this post encourages me. Our pastor’s sermon yesterday was “Is God’s grace really sufficient?” Oh, yes! His strength is made perfect in weakness!

  18. 22


    You have a very wise husband, Kristen. I’m so glad you’re taking us all on this journey with you. It has been so exciting to watch God work through your family, and I know He has great things planned for Africa. Can’t wait to hear reports from the field!

  19. 23

    beth says

    Seriously Kristen….. I could’ve written this exact thing (minus the Africa business) about our morning yesterday! It was absolutely a battle and I felt much the same way you did! It always seems like Sunday mornings are particularly bad around here and I recognize that attacker for his tricks…but thank you for the reminder about where I should lean.

  20. 24


    Amen! I appreciate that reminder your husband’s wise words spoke – that we should feel unworthy in a way, because it humbles us and gives us a greater appreciation for His acceptance of us, even in these times!

  21. 26


    That was me yesterday, too. Satan is trying to kill me through my teenagers. I found myself in constant prayer yesterday trying to figure out how better to respond to them. You are lucky to have a “believer” as a husband.

  22. 28


    This post left me sobbing. Sobbing, then so grateful. Such amazing words, your husband spoke to you!! I wonder could he possibly have known how far they’d travel. Are if you could’ve known how many people would be blessed by your sharing your weakness. Thank you, precious Sister. Thank you. Once again, I’m reminded that in our weakness His strength is made perfect.
    Go in His power, His strength! Praying His grace covers you all abundantly in the weeks to come. Much love!

  23. 29


    Thank God he uses ordinary people like you and I to do his work. Left to our own ability we would fail miserably. But in the end people see what us “ordinary people” have done and can see God’s fingerprints all over it. They see what God has done through us, then they believe!

  24. 30


    Sometimes I think you must have hidden microphones in our house and then prodeed to write about us!! HA! Seriously though, you are encouraging, transparent, and inspiring. Thank you!!!

  25. 31

    Heather says

    Kristen, I have been reading your blog silently for about a year now…taking in your words silently. I signed up today for a missions trip to the DR and I must say I thought this myself…how I am unworthy, how I fall facefirst in sin sometimes…thank you SO MUCH for using your words to uplift my heart. Gods working through you and your family. God bless!

  26. 32

    Pam says

    Oh Kristen, That could sound like any given day at my house, especially Sunday mornings. I thought the blog was timely though and wanted you to know that you are not alone in your feelings. Our Pastor’s message yesterday morning was about Spiritual warfare and he spoke about the very things you mentioned – how Satan uses our own thoughts, others, and our failures against us. He accuses us of things we have done, and alot of times, he accuses us of even things that are untrue but we are prone to believe about ourselves because we forget WHOSE we are. It touched me deeply during the sermon and I was reminded of it once again while reading your entry. Never stop allowing a God to use you! Your transparency is leading a group of unworthy people to be all that God has called us to be! Blessings to you and all you touch!

  27. 33


    I was just at a Beth Moore conference this weekend. She talked about how the devil likes to entangle us in his lies. What a word in due season.

    Shed also talked about how God likes “simple folk”. I don’t know about you but I thought that was fantastic news.

  28. 35


    I had to come back cuz I just unpacked my notes from Beth Moore, ok fine and my clothes too and my shampoo. (stop judging me 😉 )

    Just key points just for you that I am plucking from my notes based on what I interpreted you going through:
    Wrestling with God is a form of intimacy. Some things are worth fighting for.
    The cross already cut the ropes of entangling sin – however if we are not careful what was once untangled can be well entangled again (gah, hate that).
    Not everything that is happening to us is cuz we blew it. We aren’t always paying for “some sin way back when”.
    If destruction fails to entangle us; distraction will do its best (set the ding dong cell phones and computers away and just meditate with God). Our society is suffering from Spiritual ADD. – Ok maybe this point was just for me. Heh.
    It will scare the death of us if we are scared to be our own broken selves.
    God can make a mighty soldier out of anyone willing to get untangled.
    Who do you want to be when it’s all said and done?
    We are called to tell our testimony; we are called to use our mouths (oh this last part was GOOD NEWS for ME haahaah 😀 )
    We are not so messed up that we can mess up God.

    Love you!

  29. 37

    Debbie says

    Thank You! I needed to hear/ read those words and be reminded that it is not against flesh and blood or even my own inadequacy that I battle, but against the deceiver of my soul. Thank you for reminding me that it isn’t about ME!

  30. 39


    We all have Sundays like this. Praise God for your husband’s wise words, at the perfect time. He is a good leader for your family. Praying for you all. And for Maureen. You are such an encouragement to so many. Thank you for reminding us of our desperate need of our Savior!

    Much love!

  31. 40


    Kristen, this is why I read your blog. I was so there with you Sunday morning. Same issues. Same whiney kids. Same hollering mom. Then God reminded me it’s so much bigger than all that. God bless you and your family. You most DEFINTELY are who He is calling for all that you do. You are doing amazing work for Him. Thank you! If you wouldn’t mind, please take a look at my post from today and pray.


  32. 41


    I just wanted to drop by to thank you for your book. I started reading it tonight after discovering the mess my three youngest children made in the kitchen during the hour’s time I lounged with my husband to watch our favorite television program (a date we rarely seem to keep). Strangely enough, no one could explain why there was cheese smeared across the ottoman in our family room. I appreciate your honesty, humility and humor and look forward to reading more — even if I have to lock myself in the bathroom.

  33. 42


    Thank you. I just started reading you. I am God loving person, the only one in my marriage and surrounding friends. I can relate to your word and they give me confort. God does thing so His name is glorified in all things. By having thisfight, by posting it online,you have helped me heal my bruised faith. Thank you.

  34. 43

    Debra says

    THANK YOU FOR THIS POST!! I have been in a raging fight myself. It seems like the harder I try the worse things get with my children. I have had several break downs lately and just want to throw my hands up! Thank you for being open and honest enough to share what happens in your family and give us encouragment. I pray your trip will be even better than you guys can even imagine!! Much Love!

  35. 45


    I just had a Sunday morning full of frustration earlier this month. As a foster parent, I wondered if God really knew what He was doing handing me these kids. That morning, our pastor shared about the lives of Priscilla and Aquila and how their willingness to show hospitality (as you are doing with young women in Africa!) made an eternal impact in the Kingdom! I’m sure P & A felt inadequate many times, too. Your husband is so right- that’s who God uses.

  36. 47


    Hey there, You’ve done an incredible job. I’ll certainly digg it and personally recommend to my friends.

    I’m confident they will be benefited from this website.

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