Accept Help

No man should try to be an island. God created us to live in relationships, in relationship with him and with other people, but we’re not always very good at it. We often strive to exert our independence, to control our circumstances and surroundings, and to be free of even any small dependency on others. Yet we all need help. Usually much more than we are willing to admit or accept.

Giving help gets a lot more attention, especially in Christian circles. Jesus spent a lot of time on the subject and the gospels are filled with verses about helping those in need physically, emotionally and spiritually. Clearly we are to encourage, teach, exhort, feed, clothe and otherwise support one another in our lives together, bearing each other’s burdens. You’ve probably heard many sermons on the topic.

But how many sermons have you heard on receiving help? It seems that that topic should be preached just as frequently, as for each instance of giving there must be an instance of receiving. Perhaps receiving doesn’t merit emphasis because it’s so much easier to receive than to give. But is it really? Receiving often requires significant humility. It’s a tacit admission that we cannot manage on our own, and that can be very hard, too hard for some of us.

I’ll venture that most of you could use some help at this point in your life. I know I could. Maybe you could use help with parenting defiant teenagers; shedding debt and getting on stable financial footing; eating well, losing weight and controlling diabetes; managing anger, sadness or job-related stress; or simple household repairs and maintaining your home and yard in good condition. We all need help.

Undoubtedly, you also have friends, relatives and/or coworkers who are ready, willing and able to assist you. Perhaps they’ve even seen your need and tried to come to your aid in the past, only to be pushed away. I know I’ve been guilty of rejecting wise counsel and practical assistance that would have helped me, but I’m learning to be different. You can too.

The three most powerful words in the English language are, “Please help me.” The four most powerful words are, “Please help me God.”

Why not use them more often?