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The Painful Truth About Asking for Help

Today at church we went through what I will call an exercise in casting out sinful behaviors to make room for a better relationship with Christ. I can’t really explain it very well, but I’m not here to talk about that; I wanted to talk about what came out of it.

As we renounced our sinful behaviors and allowed the Holy Spirit to work within us, I was feeling somewhat stuck. I know I have sinful behaviors that need to end, and I wanted to feel the Holy Spirit working in me, but really I just felt that I was in a dead spot. A stuck spot. Like there was a barrier between myself and God.

After ignoring some nudges from the Spirit, I went forward for some prayer. I shared with what I’ll call an “intercessor.” I shared that maybe I was too prideful–that I was trying to take control of everything and that maybe I shouldn’t be doing that.

He said a prayer, and I went back to my seat and sat down.

The end.

No, I didn’t necessarily feel healed in that moment. But as I sat and listened to the words the worship team sang, I soaked them in:

He’s in the waiting
He’s in the waiting
As your triumph unfolds
He’s never failing
He’s never failing

And then I melted.

So much waiting over the last year. So much.

In good circumstances and in bad…just waiting. The painful waiting.

The song resonated with me.

Currently we wait to move into a new home. Expecting to move this weekend, our move was pushed out a few weeks. Now we live out of boxes.


Good waiting.

And we wait for circumstances to pass that we don’t enjoy–like traveling for a work event. (Love the travel, don’t love the event.)

And in the meantime, the stress builds.

Stressing about work. Will the shipment to California go out okay? Insert miscommunication here. Will the products get out on time? Insert obstacles and irritated salesmen here.

Stressing about the move. Will it go through this time? Will the septic system be repaired on time? What should I pack now? Should I unpack some boxes so I can use a pan to make dinner?

Stressing about money. Will we have enough to close on the house? Do we pay all the bills before we move?

And then trying to hold everything together like Elmer’s glue on a dining room chair. It’s all going to fall apart.

When I sat down and listened to the lyrics, all the emotions washed over me as I thought about our waiting and all of the other stressors weighing on me.

How prideful I’ve been, thinking I could fix everything myself–that I could hold everything together. Who am I to think I can control every area of my life and still keep it together mentally, spiritually, emotionally?

Truth is, I can’t.

So then I cried. I cried to let out the stress. I cried because I’m tired. I cried because I have to admit I need help. I cried because I didn’t want anyone to see me break down. (Totally backwards, I know.)

And then I admitted to myself, my husband, to others–I need help. And I was tasked with asking for help this week.

As I thought about this today, I thought about who I could ask for help. I thought about the things for which I need help. I thought about how to ask for help.

Believe you me, I did not come out of that conversation with myself any less confused than I was before I went into it.

There are people I would ask for help. But I’m afraid they are too busy. I’m afraid I will be a burden.

There are things with which I need help. But if I have minutes in the day, shouldn’t I be strong enough to take care of them? Maybe I am just being lazy.

How do I ask for help?

I don’t even have an excuse for that one. I just don’t even know how.

I think it’s actually kind of sad that so many people don’t know how to ask for help. Now, there are definitely some people who abuse it, but I think the majority of us have had it ingrained in us that it’s inappropriate to ask for help. We think it makes us look weak. We think it makes us look lazy. We think this, that, and the other excuse.

Does it really come down to pride in the end? Only you can answer that question.

But for me…

…perhaps I have become too prideful. I want to be supermom and superwife. Yet if you look around my kitchen and you look at the boxes all around my house, you will know. If you see me having a melt down in front of my kids, you will know. If I miss a deadline at work, you will know. I am afraid to be exposed. Deep down I am afraid of being a fraud. If I show you that I’m really not put together, I’ll feel like a fake. I’m afraid you won’t like me anymore. I’m afraid I’ll be a failure and that I’ll feel less than.

That’s the truth of it.

So maybe today, maybe tomorrow, but sometime this week I will ask someone for help. Maybe with something little. Maybe with something a little more important. Even if I do feel small, I know it’s a step in the right direction.

What do you need help with today?

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