When my nephew was around two years old, my sister-in-law offered to carry a bag for him to which he said, “No! I do it myself.” To which she replied, “You are so much like your Aunt!” I beamed proudly at this interaction, for I did, and still do, value independence.
There is a balance though, between being independent and not asking for help at all. Asking for help is a spiritual discipline I am constantly working on.
Part of asking for help is communicating, communicating what you need and being honest about it. This can be viewed as a weakness, or as inefficient, because, couldn’t we really just do it better ourselves? But really, isolating ourselves is not healthy. We all need each other. As John Donne said, “No man [or woman, I would add] is an island.”
It was brought up in the combined Adult Sunday School conversations a few weeks ago that we are not very good at asking for volunteers. Again, this goes back to being honest about what we need, and communicating that need. On the other hand, it also is being open to communicating about how we can help. If you see an event coming up in the church calendar, find the person in charge, and ask, “How can I help you?” While asking for help is a spiritual discipline, so is offering it. Find a way to offer your gifts which can be anywhere from chaperoning a youth trip, to helping stuff eggs for the Easter Egg Hunt.
So thank you. Thank you to all who have reminded me that I need to ask for help. Thank you to those who have helped me, from decorating for a Shrove Tuesday party, to stuffing eggs, to being adult helpers at Children’s Church, and many more. Thank you to those who have offered their help for whatever I need. I am very grateful and will continue to work on asking.
“Let’s not get tired of doing good, because in time we’ll have a harvest if we don’t give up. So then, let’s work for the good of all whenever we have an opportunity, and especially for those in the household of faith.” Galatians 6:9-10