Accepting the Generosity of Others
I’ve never been great at accepting help from others. I don’t like the vulnerability that comes from asking for help. I don’t like the appearance of weakness that comes from needing help. I hate the feeling of asking someone to invest their hard-earned time and resources into me. If I’m honest, I suspect it is because I don’t think I am worth it. I feel more comfortable finding a solution to my problems on my own. There have been many times that I’d rather suffer in silence than rely on others to help me. It’s a problem, I know.
One of the reasons that this mindset is problematic is because it keeps people from their calling as members of the body of Christ to share burdens and to love and care for each other. If I refuse to ask for help or refuse help offered, then I am in effect keeping people from their responsibility to follow Christ and to serve others well. They can’t serve me well if I never admit to my need or never accept a generous offer to help when it is needed.
There is a great deal of discussion in churches, sermons, Bible studies, and conversations over coffee about our need to serve others. Jesus is crystal clear about it. We are to love others and serve them. But, we rarely talk about the need to accept the love and service of others. I’m not sure why this is, but I’ve seen it time and time again in my own life and in the lives of others. I can be quick to encourage myself or others to action through acts of kindness and service, but I am slow to admit when I need an act of kindness or service from others.
The world can be a cruel place sometimes, but we can and should take solace in the fact that we aren’t alone. We most certainly have Jesus with us, but we have other brothers and sisters in Christ by our side to walk through the difficulties with us. Let us be quick to offer a helping hand when we are able. Let us also be quick to accept a helping hand when we are in need.
Questions for Reflection:
Is it easier for you to offer help or to accept help? Why?
Do you struggle with being vulnerable or appearing weak to others? Why or why not?