One Step at a Time

Asking for help is not one of my favourite things to do. Independence has always been something I've been good at.

Until now.

You see, seven weeks ago I got my heel bone and achilles tendon reconstructed. It's a pretty big surgery that results in about six months on crutches. The surgery wasn't a surprise and I had thought that I had prepared myself for the first leg of the journey. I had someone coming to check on me but in my mind - I was going to do this on my own. I, Jogee, was going to remain independent!

Boy oh boy, was I wrong.

Everything was more difficult; making meals, feeding my dog, moving laundry. Everything. Was. Hard. I quickly discovered that there would be no getting through this without help. It's one thing to ask for rides to and from work or take Koda for a walk but I found myself resisting from asking for help in all areas. Areas like - cleaning my house and grocery shopping. It became hard for me to ask for help in these things because they were so personal - it meant asking people to not just do things FOR me but to care for me and to clean my mess and my dirt. I started to feel ashamed or embarrassed because I couldn't do it - I couldn't fix it myself.

Everyone who has pitched in and helped me in the last seven weeks has been happy to do it. They don't make me feel like it's a chore - they joyfully help where I need it. I'm always so relieved to have the help and it has often made me reflect on how ridiculous it is to not ask for help.

It makes me think of so many moments I have seen at our Challenge Course or Climbing Wall. Participants get tied in and start climbing - wanting to conquer the element but at some point everything gets real. Maybe it's tunnel vision, maybe being watched by their friends is too nerve-racking. Many lose track of where to put their hands or their feet - no decision seems to be the right one. Fear and the feeling of being stuck sets in. Often participants don't ask for help. They just freeze. A few moments later - a staff person will ask, "What can I do to help you?" or they'll give a hint to move a hand or a foot. Most participants respond immediately to the assistance. The really interesting thing is - once a participant realizes that someone is helping them - they'll ask again and again. It becomes easier.

It makes me wonder though, why do we wait for the "stuck" feeling or the fear of being alone before we seek help? Why is "help" one of the last things we look for? Why is it that we are afraid of showing that we can't do it alone? Maybe it's a fear that no one will be there to help. Has the world taught us that we're alone in this life with no one to help us? But Psalms 121 says "I lift my eyes to the hills - where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of Heaven and earth. He will not not let your foot slip - he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Isreal will neither slumber nor sleep.

In my case - I have wondered why it bothers me so much to get help cleaning up my mess when I know that people care so much about me. They don't care about the mess. Why does it bother me to ask someone to carry my load (groceries)? They don't care about the weight of groceries! Is it pride? Or maybe it's that I want so much to do it on my own because that makes me strong...or just not weak. When I have spent time with God on this (many, many times in my life) He has consistently brought me back to 2 Corinthians 12 where it says God's power is made perfect in weakness and that when I am weak, then I am strong.

Where are you today? Do you wait until you're stuck and don't see any options to ask God for help? Are you carrying a load or a weight that you shouldn't be? Or maybe you need help with the mess and are scared to turn to God for help. Wherever you're at - may you know today that we have a God that loves us, who is eager to help us, and eager to meet us in our mess. He takes joy in us - His children, and is waiting for each one of us to turn to Him today.

Peace peeps,


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