Tuesday, June 9, 2009

BLESSING BY RECEIVING


A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. (Proverbs 11:25, NIV)


One of the greatest deceptions of our current culture is the belief in total self-sufficiency. Day-time talk shows pander to new-age gurus who promote controlling our own destiny, karma, and the power within us.


But let's face it, we in the special needs community are living proof that sometimes, through no ones fault, life can throw us a raw deal. Despite our most positive attitudes, life can be extremely difficult. And God never intended for us to handle these times on our own. In fact, we're commanded to "Bear one another's burdens" in Galatians 6:2.


So how come we're so filled with pride when others offer help? "Oh, no, we're fine... REALLY, " we profess, though wondering how we'll get through a current trial. Clean my house for me? Watch my kids for me while I nap? If I do that these people might think I'm lazy, or worse, that I can't handle my problems. I'm supposed to be able to handle this. These are the lies that Satan whispers in our ears when Jesus really wants us to hear, "Come to me all who are weary, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28)


Now, here's the real kicker -- Aside from the fact that God repeatedly reminds us that we need His help, we also rob others of blessings when we do not allow them to serve us. Ouch!


I had to learn this lesson the hard way. Four months into my last pregnancy, I began experiencing premature labor. In total disbelief and denial, I refused assistance for all the usual reasons. But then the contractions would come more frequently and would get stronger, so I surrendered to receiving help. The joy on the face of those who brought us meals or who aided us in other ways was indescribable. Far from being put out, each found themselves blest for the opportunity to serve.


If you're anything like me, trials or high-need times also have a tendency to scatter the brain. Therefore, it's helpful to have a list of things that regularly need to be done compiled either before crisis hits or when you have a minute to gather your thoughts. That list might include things like meals, transportation or babysitting for the kids, walking the dog, laundry, lawn-mowing and definitely, specific prayer requests. Don't have someone who's offering help to you in trying times? Form a network with other parents, so you can be there for each other during the inevitable situations that hit all of us.


Remember, there can be no givers if there are no receivers. Your time will come to serve another. In fact, you're serving that special, treasured child! And when you allow another to bless you, you are opening the door to God's blessings being poured out on them.

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