“It’s only when we admit our un-fine moments that people can actually get to us to help us.”
I am a stubborn human woman. I know, it’s shocking to hear, but I have learned over the course of my life to be fairly self-reliant. I don’t ask for help for much of anything, and when I do, I have to be darn near death. What I have learned, in times when I expected help to be there, was that people will always fail you. People will hurt you, disappoint you, even crush you if given the opportunity. So why on earth would I want to place myself in a position where I am actually asking for support, needing another person to raise me up? To me, it just seems like you’re asking for trouble, and I certainly don’t need more trouble in my life.
And then I began this transformation…this recent self-reflection of who I am, where I’ve been, and where I’m headed. And I’ve realized over the last few years that some changes need to be made if I want to achieve the happiness I desire, with the people I want in my life and stability, all wrapped with a nice big bow. So I’ve been trying these changes on for size, one at a time, and seeing how they work for me. You see, no one gets to be who they are by accident. I’m not this stubborn, independent woman by accident, but absolutely by situation, dictated by the events in my life that demanded I either adapt or die. For the most part I like who I am, and strange as it may sound, I wouldn’t change most of the events that happened in my past – they all occurred to mold me into who I am today. Sure, do I wish I could be who I am without those traumas…well, yeah! But I understand that God’s purpose behind each and every trial we face is to mold our character, not to harm us, and to make us reach closer to Him.
But I’m also learning that how I coped with these events just a few years ago might have functioned perfectly fine then, but for where I’m headed, they are not quite so functional anymore. And I want to change – which is the biggest victory of all. So I’ve been working very hard to acknowledge the areas that might need tweaking, or a small sledgehammer, and have been eager to work on those areas and test them out. But even with all this work and support from a phenomenal therapist, there are times I feel like that small, scared little girl trapped in the grown-up body, cowering in the corner, alone and afraid, just wanting someone in my corner, saying they are with me and talking me through what’s happening.
That was this past Tuesday. Court…again. Sometimes I think I’m so grown and strong, but court…lately it brings me to my knees every time. The atmosphere, the environment, the reason I’m there – it crushes my spirit faster than anything else I can imagine. I knew before I went I should bring moral support – but felt embarrassed to ask someone to subject themselves to that ugliness. After all, it’s my junk…I loathe being there, why would I ask a friend to endure what I can barely stand? But that morning, I heard God telling me to simply ask – and so in obedience, I did just that…at 8 am. I sent a group text to my friends – the ones I know I can count on…and in God-like fashion, they responded. Why it continues to surprise me, I should really be ashamed. Two separate friends rallied, while those who couldn’t sent their words of encouragement and prayers. I felt so very loved and protected in those moments – it brings me to tears again just recalling the texts.
At court, ‘they’ were there first, but knowing I had support on the way, I held my head high. I didn’t feel anxiety as I usually do. I was receiving texts of support all the while until my first dear friend arrived. And we just chatted and passed the time – the LONG time – visiting and forgetting where we were, which made me so at ease. Then my 2nd friend arrived, and it was like a party of privilege, with just us 3 as the only attendees. We joked and laughed and had a great time – almost completely oblivious to where we were. God was truly with us, and I was certainly blessed.
As the business at hand finally began, it was unproductive and difficult, as predicted, but I wasn’t afraid or uptight. I conducted myself in a pleasant manner, as I usually do, and his actions spoke for themselves, as they typically do. When we were finished with the Judge, I simply walked out as if ‘they’ didn’t matter, and left, emotionally tired but not defeated. There will be more battles to endure, but I am now confident that if I actually trust to call on my friends, they will rally to that call and be there for me when I need them – I just have to choose to let them.
God never intended for us to live this life alone – John 15:13 states…
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”
Here God is referencing more than a friendship, but a love relationship between us and Him, and in turn, between us and those around us. His greatest command to us is to love one another; when it’s the hardest thing to do, when they don’t ask for it, when they hurt you, when they don’t talk to you for years & years, when they laugh in your face, when they try to kill you, when they destroy your reputation – there is no stipulation on loving one another. Jesus loved prostitutes and murderers – are we under any less of an obligation than He was?
So I’m trying a radical new approach – praying for ‘him.’ There was a time he loved Jesus, when he wasn’t so lost, when he knew the right choices to make. I decided a long, long time ago not to carry around hate – it’s useless, heavy baggage with no purpose and it only impacts me. I’m certainly not going to start now. Lay down my life? Not quite yet, but I’ll keep up with the prayer and let you know how that works out…