Receive Support From Others
It’s better to have a partner than go it alone.
Share the work, share the wealth.
And if one falls down, the other helps,
But if there’s no one to help, tough! ECCLESIASTES 4:9-10 (THE MESSAGE)
One of the hardest things for me along my journey was to receive help from others. I wanted to endure on my own – not rely on anyone but myself. Unfortunately, the journey becomes extremely lonely and difficult when we try to go it alone.
God said, “It’s not good for the Man to be alone …” GENESIS 2:18 (THE MESSAGE)
Being an amputee I need a lot of physical support. Initially I tried to do everything on my own – dress myself – put my luggage in the overhead bin – hang our Christmas lights. Pride got in the way. I did not want to humble myself and ask for help so I would struggle through the task. Eventually I would become frustrated and then angry. It was not a pretty picture.
I have learned through the years though that I do need physical help – though humbling it sure makes life a lot easier. Jan now tucks in my pockets, puts my belt through the loops I cannot reach and ties my shoes. When someone offers to put my luggage in the overhead bin – I gladly accept his or her help. As for the Christmas lights – I no longer hang them!
Along the journey I also have needed emotional support. I needed the listening ear and understanding heart of a trusted family member or friend. I needed a ‘safe person’ to whom I could open my heart – share my fears and doubts – cry with – and not be judged.
Fortunately for me I found that ‘safe person’ in Jan. She has listened to me, cried for me when I could not, just held me when there were no words and loved me when I did not deserve it. But at the same time, I can’t tell you how many times she has given me a swift kick that has challenged me to move forward again.
It is personal interaction such as this – the gentle hug and the swift kick – that helped me take those next steps forward. It can come only from someone tangible – someone you can touch, feel, see and trust. When someone reaches out to me I experience the awesome gift of God’s expression of love towards me.
“Modern research echoes
what the Bible has said for centuries:
people who have intimate connections
in which they are vulnerable and honest
generally live better, function at higher levels,
and heal faster than those
who are isolated or distant from others.
We all need the fuel of love and relationship
to continue growing and healing.”
Dr. John Townsend
When I experienced the dark night of the soul I desperately needed spiritual support. During that time I had no desire to even pick up the Bible to read. That was when Jan would step up and offer to read to me – to encourage me. She became my Bible. I was humbled.
The majority of that time I didn’t feel like praying but that was when my closest friends would come alongside and pray for me. In my darkest moments I often would receive a call or a card from a friend or a group from church saying that they were praying for me. I was so grateful that they stood in the gap for me – this encouraged me to take steps forward.
Let’s see how inventive we can be
in encouraging love and helping out,
not avoiding worshiping together as some do
but spurring each other on,
especially as we see the big Day approaching.
HEBREWS 10:25 (THE MESSAGE)
Remember my friends while there are seasons in our lives for giving – there are also seasons for receiving. As humbling as it may be, learning to receive physical, emotional and spiritual help will lighten your burden and help you to endure the journey.
“Friendship is one of the sweetest joys of life.
Many might have failed
beneath the bitterness of their trial
had they not found a friend.”
CHARLES HADDON SPURGEON
On the journey with you,