We have certainly experienced a tremendous amount of love and support since Paul’s “heart episode” last month. Most of it has come in the form of e-mails, cards and phone calls. Some of it by local friends chaufferring Paul to various medical appointments. And some of it even in the form of unexpected material assistance from tequila to checks! (The tequila was actually prescribed by Paul’s surgeon.)
Learning to ask for help has been a life-long process for both of us. We like to think we are better at it now, although there was not as much asking on our part recently as there was simply the spontaneous generosity of giving by people who love and care about us. We learned how much of a gift it can be to others to ALLOW them to give of themselves out of their own areas of abundance.
Below is a piece by Steve Goodier about giving and receiving help that seemed relevent. We hope you enjoy it.
Some people never need help. One man caught his foot in railroad tracks. He tried to pull it out, but his efforts only seemed to make matters worse.
He heard a noise and turned around to see a train coming. In a panic he prayed, “Dear God, please get my foot out of these tracks and I’ll stop my heavy drinking and smoking!”
Nothing happened. He was still stuck, and the train showed no sign of slowing.
So he prayed again, “Oh, Lord, please get my foot out and I’ll stop drinking and smoking and carousing and cussing!”
Still nothing. He tugged and pulled as the train bore down. In sheer desperation, he pled for help a final time. “Lord, please, if you get my foot out of the tracks, I’ll do anything! I’ll … I’ll … I’ll become a minister!
Suddenly his foot shot out of the tracks and he got up and dusted himself off as the train whizzed by. Then he looked toward Heaven and said, “Never, mind, Lord, I got it out myself.”
Some people seemingly never need help from anyone. They rarely call on friends or even family to lend a hand. They seldom, if ever, confide in a good listener. They seem to believe they should be completely self sufficient; that needing assistance is an unwelcome weakness.
But others find great value in occasionally asking for assistance, and in offering it, too. Needing help, even once in a while, reminds them that they were not meant to journey this life alone. It is a group outing, not a private experience.
Those who find help when they need it are fortunate. But those who give help generously are the most fortunate of all. Few experiences can produce a sense of joy and satisfaction like that of truly easing the burden of another human being, with no thought of return. Fact is… when we help someone else, we can hardly help but be happy. At those magical times we may wonder who really helped whom!
Copyright © Steve Goodier