This morning, as I sat at my kitchen table, I looked outside at my tomato and basil plants growing on the deck and saw a baby rabbit who has been exploring our property for a couple of weeks now. For the third time in two weeks, this little guy managed to get up the 6 steps onto the deck, hopped around checking out my plants, and trying to figure out how to get down. Once again, I carefully went outside and coaxed him back to the steps, and watched him navigate the steps back down to hop back into the safety of the bushes. I know he will eventually learn, but for now, he needs help in learning to either not come up or how to always find the safe way down. Sipping my coffee, back at my kitchen table I started thinking about how many times we fall back into our old ways, negative thinking, or situations in which we need someone to help us through it?
I have to admit, asking for help has never been easy for me. Being the eldest of three girls, responsible for my sisters when my mom was working, teaching my students, or leading a school, I have always been and continue to be a problem-solver. I am the person others come to for help, guidance, or a shoulder to cry on. However, over the past year and a half, God has shown me it is okay to ask for help. We have all experienced the ups and downs of pandemic life, but add to that finding yourself unemployed, gaining ‘pandemic pounds’, and in desperate need to hear God, you have a recipe for negative self-talk and depression.
This week, I had the opportunity to connect with a friend via Skype. It has been a busy couple of weeks for both of us, but seeing her smiling face and planning for an upcoming visit was just what my heart needed. Although it was a fun, light-hearted conversation, after disconnecting, I did not realize how much I needed it and how I was letting the negative thoughts control me. After getting off the call, I opened my Bible to Ecclesiastes (a book I have to admit not spending much time in), and read,
If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Ecclesiastes 4:10
Then, I turned to the Book of John,
Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. John 15:13
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another… 1 John 1:7
We are called to community and rely on each other through our friendships and love. On an upcoming episode of Table Talk: A Place to Gather, Guide & Go, my co-host Alyssa and I talk about this very topic. The idea of our community carrying us versus condemning us comes up several times in our conversation. There it is again…asking and accepting help when we need it.
Just like the little rabbit on my deck, God has to guide me time and again before I start learning the lesson.