YOU’RE the girl everyone comes to for help.
You’re the mum who has parenting sussed.
You’re the friend who has loyalty nailed.
You’re the woman of wisdom everyone else seeks out.
You’re the prayer warrior people text at midnight.
You’re the modern day prophet people call to see if ‘God has said anything’.
You’re the preacher people quote.
You’re the sister everyone wishes they had.
You’re the businesswoman others aspire to.
You’re the gran everyone wants to be.
You’re the wife others look to for inspiration.
Yours is the kitchen people hang out in.
Yours is the car people hitch lifts in.
You’re the health and fitness icon people follow.
Yours is the spare room with a waiting list for check-in.
Yours is the phone that never stops ringing.
Yours is the bible full of ‘thank you’ cards and bookmarks.
You’re the Good News personified.
So what happens when you’re the one who needs help?
Your kids go off the rails.
Your friendship turns sour.
Your wisdom only made a situation worse.
Your prayers seem unanswered.
You can’t seem to hear the voice of God anymore.
Your preaches just don’t seem to come together.
You have a family rift.
Your finances are challenged.
You want a break from the grandkids.
Your marriage is struggling.
Your kitchen is now empty.
Your car is off the road.
You haven’t been well for months.
Your nest is empty.
Your phone may as well be broken.
Your bible is now a book end.
Suddenly YOU need the good news personified.
You need to hear from someone who just seems to know what to say.
You need another mum to come alongside, to reassure you that it will be okay.
You need a friend. One who will sit with you at 6am, or watch Friends with you at midnight.
You need someone with that godly wisdom, that cuts through the nonsense and speaks right to your heart.
You need to be surrounded by people who won’t just say they’ll pray, but who will actually do it.
You need to hear from that gentle spirit who sought God on your behalf and now has a word for you in season.
You need to be reminded of the things you’ve said, and preached, and done, as a reminder of how far God has brought you.
You need family to come and help.
You need the people who ‘have’ to be generous in your season of ‘having not’.
You need a spiritual grandmother, to bake and to hug and to listen to through tears.
You need to relax and allow your husband to care without feeling like a failure for needing his help.
So what if yours isn’t the house everyone is in – for NOW – be still. Let God inhabit your space for a while.
With failing health, you need people who have come through similar to walk beside you. You may want to be alone, but you must resist. You need the strength of others.
You need to be brave and pick up the phone sometimes, but also to have people who will regularly check in on you.
You need to need your bible for yourself, again.
I’m walking this journey myself just now. Months into an illness that has no sign of relenting, and more surgery ahead, I’ve gone from being ‘the one who…’ , used to being looked to for help or wisdom or example, to being ‘the one in need of…’ help, prayer, healing, support and encouragement.
I’m writing this today to try and be an encouragement for any of you going through any of the things I mentioned. I’m writing to ask you to give yourself permission to be helped, but I’m also writing to ask the rest of you to take stock of those around you.
There will be beautiful, strong, bold, gentle, faithful, consistent Activated women in your lives. They will have been there for you and they will be girls you will look to and aspire to be like. But every now and then life will throw a curve ball and instead of catching it, dealing with it and moving on, every now and then it will knock the wind from their sails and instead of them being the carriers of the incredible good news of Jesus they will need to be reminded of it.
2 Timothy 4:17 says this: “But the Lord stood with me and gave me strength.”
I don’t know what your beginning would be to this sentence…
I’ve got bad health,
my marriage isn’t what it once was,
my finances are in tatters,
I’m just not able to do what I once did,
my kids aren’t walking in faith,
I’m just not that happy at the moment
but please don’t finish any one of those statements with a full stop. Instead, draw in a little comma and complete with those incredible words, “But… the Lord stood with me and gave me strength.” You know, sometimes all we need is a reminder of who is in their corner.
Girls, if you are all we would dream an Activate woman would be; active, mobilised, equipped and inspired to share your faith through authentic friendships and community, then we salute you. We cheer you on and we pray for you and your family. Hurrah indeed.
But if you are somehow not there just now, and maybe you once were, we give you permission to be the one receiving help and support. Jesus is in your corner. He died to bring you life, and life to the full. What you are experiencing now is just one part of life living in a mortal body, in a land full of injustice and sin. But we have hope. In one who will exceedingly, abundantly go above and beyond all that we can ask or even imagine. I know you may not ‘see’ it yet for yourself, but trust in the author of life itself. He’s a fabulous writer with more twists and turns up his sleeve than we could even believe for.
Whatever camp you are in though, we do carry the good news.
For me, in this season of weakness, needing help and reassurance, I am glad of the Good News. I am glad not of a far away heaven or of a God of miracles, but of a resurrected saviour who promised never to leave me as an orphan, so who sent ‘another of the same’ in the form of the Holy Spirit, so I know, even when I don’t think that I know, but I do know that He is with me. Always, and ’til the end of the age.
Girls, let’s look for opportunities to come alongside those who need us, let’s allow ourselves the help we need, and let’s daily remind ourselves of the amazing saviour we know personally.