The Gift Of Collaborators
“Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor…” Ecclesiates 4:9
Asking for help is not something I do easily. It seems I’d much prefer wandering around helpless and stuck than to actually ask for help. In fact, I like to be the one offering help rather than receiving help. I like to think that I am somewhat self-sufficient and independent. I like to consider others and their needs as opportunities for me to offer my great skill and expertise. You may sense a bit of ego and pride in these statements, but my effort to come to the aid of others can easily just be about me. It just reveals how insecure I am in my places of weakness and confusion. I often just use this “bravado” to mask the sense of inadequacy I feel.
My wife and I were driving home the other evening and she asked a question which I proceeded to answer with a long drawn out explanation (I tend to also like to hear myself talk…). At the close of my long explanation I finally admitted I didn’t really know the answer, to which we both laughed. I’m sure for her it would have been far easier to hear my admission without my attempt to pretend I knew the answer. It makes me realize how foolish I am at times.
The Old Testament book of Ecclesiates says that two are better than one because they have a good return on their labor. The writer then goes on and lists various advantages to being in relationship. All of them seem to indicate that life is enhanced by relationships and that a life without relational help is diminished. In other words it is better to admit my need for others and receive the benefits of relationship than to live in the illusion that I don’t need anyone’s help.
What I have been learning is that I need collaborators on my journey with Jesus. They are a part of the transformative process in my life and to exclude others will hinder that process. What this collaboration requires is the willingness to set aside my ego, admit my weakness and need, and invite others to come alongside me to offer their help. It seems that this is an important aspect of a growing spiritual life. The apostle Paul indicates this sort of symbiotic relationship when he describes the various parts of the body of Christ and their relationship in 1 Corinthians 12. No one part can deny the need of any other part. It is basic to the healthy functioning of both the individual and the whole.
Part of the mandate of Press Pause Ministries is to create space to experience God. The remarkable thing is that as I create space for God I realize how weak I am and how much I am in need of help. In that place of humble awareness Jesus often shows up to help in the form of those human beings, those fellow companions on the journey of Christ-like transformation. Jesus even says, “Where two or more are gathered in my name, there am I, in the midst…”. I am better for the collaborators around me, offering help in my weakness and need. My challenge will always be to drop my guard, be vulnerable and receive the help offered with humility and gratefulness.
I don’t have all the answers, nor am I without weakness and need. I am learning to ask for help and receive it when it is offered. I am grateful for the ways Jesus shows up in the lives of others to help me on the journey of life. May you continue to create the space to encounter the Lord and also experience His love and help expressed through His followers. In this day watch for those Jesus is bringing to your side to walk, collaborate and assist you on this amazing journey of transformation as a child of God.
Here is some music to help further your reflection. Blessings.