Thursday, February 4, 2010

Together we can!

Greetings Princess Warriors!

I pray that all is well and that God's favor continues to shine upon you, bringing joy, regardless of your circumstances. May God fill you with His strength as you fight your daily battles. May He bring you victory after victory! Amen! I just had to pray a blessing over you. We just can't get enough blessings, can we?

So ...

The other day, I was finally able to visit the "Re-Gifting Store" near my place of employment in Vancouver, WA. I've driven past this unique business for the past couple of months but never seem to have enough time to explore the treasures waiting just beyond the cheerfully painted windows.

I don't know about you, but I like a bargain. I'd already heard this was a great place to find good deals, and that it was operated by good people, people who were helping people in the community make ends meet. Needless to say, I had a great shopping experience while listening to great Christian music. Yes ... this is a Christian owned and operated business that I highly recommend. I plan to do some volunteer work in the near future.

Anyway, as I was preparing to leave, I attempted (being the strong, capable, do-it-yourself kind of woman that I am) to carry all my purchases out to my car all alone. I had a grocery-sized bag of books, including plenty of hardbacks. (They let you fill up a bag of any books for five bucks!) I'd also grabbed a kitty-cat painting for my daughter and a super-cool leather bag.

Me with the bad knee and extra pounds was going to lug this all out without asking for help, thank you very much nice Christian people. Well, thankfully, those nice Christian people were having none of my self-sufficiency. A generous and highly capable volunteer lifted my load and helped me get settled. I was very grateful for the support. I couldn't possibly have made it on my own without breaking something, at the very least a nail.

Silly, wasn't it? Me almost breaking my back trying to accomplish something by my own not-so-super strength.

Seriously, though, how often do we try to do things on our own? How often do we get discouraged fighting battles alone, attempting to wield our swords when our arms are ready to collapse under the weight? Probably more often than we care to admit.

For me, it's especially hard to ask for help when I've made a mistake, when I've sinned or fallen short. I find that I'm ashamed and afraid to let others see me at my worst. Forget about God's grace, it doesn't apply in this situation, I falsely tell myself. Or, I'm facing a huge battle of some kind and I'm out on the battlefield all alone, too tired to lift my weapon and face my enemy. Not a good position to be in -- ever.

I'm so, so glad that this dismal picture can be completely re-adjusted with a little help from my friends.

Think for a moment about Moses. He was one powerful man of God when he allowed God to work powerfully though him. But even Moses didn't fight all by himself. In one of his many adventures, he and the Israelites faced yet another formible enemy -- the Amalekites. Moses stood on top of a hill with his staff raised high. When he kept the staff up, his army was victorious. When he lowered it, well, the results were not so good. Eventually, his arms got tired. I mean can you imagine holding up a huge staff, over your head, for hours on end? I couldn't even hold a bag of books for three minutes!

Thankfully, God had stratigically provided Moses with helpers. Listen to the story:

So Joshua did as Moses had said to him, and fought with Amalek: and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. 11 And it came to pass, when Moses held up his hand, that Israel prevailed: and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. 12 But Moses' hands were heavy; and they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat thereon; and Aaron and Hur stayed up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side; and his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. Exodus 17: 10-12

These two men literaly lifted up their friend's arms. Moses didn't say, "Go away! I can manage by myself." Thank goodness for the Israelites that he was willing to share his burden.

Ladies, we, too, need others to share our burdens and to help us lighten our loads, and whatever those things weighting us down might be, God provides a way lessen our yokes, if we'll let Him. Our walk with Christ is a journey meant to be taken with other Christian travelers. And the battles we fight are meant to be won with friends by our side.

I understand how difficult it can be to humble yourself and seek help. We live in a world that tells us to pull up our bootstraps and hide our tears. But, in reality, what we all need is a person or persons that can hold up our arms when they become to weary to stay raised. Please, precious princess, just because you're a warrior doesn't imply you must stand and fight alone.

Moses, one of the greatest, godliest leaders of all time needed support. Why shouldn't we?

If your armor has become too heavy to put on, reach out. There is an armor bearer standing somewhere nearby who will help prepare you for battle. God doesn't want us to spend our lives struggling alone, oh no! He tells us where two or more are gathered He is in their midst. When God is in our midst, we can expect a victory. Lift us up, Lord. Lift us up!

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