You know what I used to hate more than anything? Asking for help. Isn’t that crazy? It was something in my genes (Southern? Stubborn? Self-reliant?) that used to drive me to be the Christian Martha Stewart, Martha Washington, and Martha in the Bible all rolled into one at the same time. And if I didn’t pull off this independent perfection, then my conclusion was that there must be something wrong with me. What a bunch of hooey.
But here is a really good thing I am learning: God doesn’t help those who help themselves. (Where did that dribble come from?) He helps those who humble themselves under His mighty hand and depend on Him to provide in real, tangible ways. And in due time, He lifts them up. That is His promise.
It is one thing to ask for help when you can still maintain composure (read: pride). It is quite another thing altogether to receive help when you are at your worst. I started seeing this principle play out in odd and vulnerable moments of my life.
I was moving. No worse time to see your own mess, dirt and clutter. But it was Melissa who helped me pack up my house when Chuck and infant Salem had a throw up bug and my freezer had come unplugged and reeked of rotting food.
When I had surgery and couldn’t bend over, Ellen insisted that she help me in a “real way.” So she scrubbed my nasty bathtub.
Nan arranged a baby celebration not only for Salem, but also a memorial service for Judah, our baby who died.
Then there is Betsy, Lyschel, Nancy, Ruthie, my folks, Lou Ann, Christie, Christina, Lora and the list goes on and on.
Friends who were willing to go the extra mile at their expense, just to help me, at my worst and ugliest moments. When I had nothing to offer them in return but a feeble and heart-felt “thank you.”
It is called community. The family of God in action. And it reminds me of Zimbabwe in an odd way.
Here is the short version of a great story. A big group of people in the Knoxville area sent a container of food, clothes, and school supplies over to people in a land far away where there are no jobs, where the shelves are empty. These were not things not to make life “comfortable” but things to help them survive. And when this group of people in Zimbabwe, our God family, opened up this metal box sent from around the world, the first thing they saw was a hand-made sign: “See, I have not forgotten you, I have engraved you on the palm of my hand.”
I weep every time I see the picture. He hasn’t forgotten them. He hasn’t forgotten you. Ask for help. Believe it will come. He has got the whole world in His hand.
Also, if you want to help us continue to bless the people of Zimbabwe, click here.