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When to ask for help

posted Feb 24, 2014, 7:41 AM by Christine Merrill
Lillian...why, oh, why does Lillian teach me so much...

We all know how kids get easily overwhelmed by tasks that seem too hard for them.  But what about when the task really IS too hard?  Lillian struggles with this.  She has a big dress-up trunk that she needs help to get in and out of the closet.  And every time she tries to put it away, then cries because she can't  Then, at some point, I find her crying in her room, figure out the problem, and we put it away together.

Why doesn't she just call me to help in the first place?  I don't know.

Terrence M. Vinson told a similar story that really struck me.

A young boy was trying to smooth out the dirt area behind his house so he could play there with his cars. There was a large rock obstructing his work. The boy pushed and pulled with all his might, but no matter how hard he tried, the rock wouldn’t budge.

His father watched for a while, then came to his son and said, “You need to use all your strength to move a rock this large.”

The boy responded, “I have used all my strength!”

His father corrected him: “No you haven’t. You haven’t had my help yet!”

They then bent down together and moved the rock easily.

Last year, I had a little health issue, and I prayed very hard for God to make it all better.  It turned out that He really wanted me to have the experience and learn from it instead.  But then I went a little too far the other way.  Like Lillian, or the boy in the story, I felt like God wanted me to solve all my problems myself.  But that's not really the case either.  God doesn't want us to be lazy, he wants us to try it ourselves, and if it's too hard, then turn to Him to help out.

So, just because God doesn't immediately solve all our problems doesn't mean that we should stop turning to him when we have something hard to do!  He wants to help, just AFTER we see how much we can do for ourselves.  And I think it's important to actually kneel down and ask, because it drives me crazy when Lillian wonders why I don't help her when she's never actually asked me :) So, be polite!