In Dependence

Do you ever have trouble asking for help?  I assume that it probably has something to do with my strong sense of independence, but that’s always been a struggle for me.  Independence is great when you are talking about freedom from an oppressive regime that taxed us out the wazoo 200 years ago, but when it comes to how I live my life as a Christ-follower, it’s value is limited.

Krista and I were talking to a close friend last night who shared that he also has a difficult time asking others to help him.  As we narrowed down the reasons, it came to pride and the desire not to let others see our weaknesses or our needs.

The problem with that perspective is that our sense of need is the defining characteristic in a Christian’s life.  No one becomes a follower of Christ without first recognizing that they need Him.  And once someone starts the journey with Christ, the degree to which they are aware of their need is the degree to which they will follow Him.

A “pull-up-your-bootstraps-and-do-it-yourself” approach only leads to emptiness and a longing for personal recognition (which can never be enough).

When we realize the limits of the resources within ourselves and the vastness of the resources that God offers us through relationship with Him, the pressure is suddenly off as we no longer have to defend ourselves and our abilities.  Instead, we come clean about how needy we are and discover that God has invited us to come to Him with our asking, seeking, and knocking.*

Jesus illustrates God’s joy in giving good things to his sons and daughters in Matthew 7:11:

“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give what is good to those who ask Him!”

Perhaps this Independence Day could also be a day to recognize the value of a life lived in dependence on an enormously capable and loving God.

*Matthew 7:7

(Thanks to Reddish for the “in dependence” idea.)

3 responses to “In Dependence

  1. Brilliant! How refreshing to be in dependence on One who is sufficiently able and fully acquainted with my dusty humanity.

  2. Jason and Krista,
    I can’t help but feel confident that God has brought me to your website for a very special reason.

    Here’s what happened (as briefly as I can write this):

    My family is in the midst of a very difficult journey through cancer with our youngest son. I won’t go into great detail except to say that he has been in this battle for over 6 years now and that through this journey I have chronicled our highs and lows through an email prayer journal which has grown to reach thousands all over the world.

    I also have been blogging for the past 8 months as well as keep Nick’s site updated (www.nick7-11.zoomshare.com).

    ANYWAY-in my last few blog entries I have been sharing some deep struggles and tonight as I sat to blog the phrase “pull up your bootstraps” came into my head and I decided to google the origin of this well-known phrase as part of my blog entry tonight. However, after six different ways of searching for this origin, I stumbled upon your blog!

    First, I believe that God needed me to hear the phrase “A “pull-up-your-bootstraps-and-do-it-yourself” approach only leads to emptiness and a longing for personal recognition (which can never be enough).” See, I was going to write about the fact that I need to “pull up my bootstraps.” After reading your thoughts, I realize that it is not about me doing this, it is about me relying on God totally which I try to do but often fail.

    Second, I was intrigued by your new publishing company “Swerve Press!” Writing is my passion and I would love to talk to you about a book proposal sometime in the future.

    God amazes me. He truly does. I am not one to travel around and post on blogs randomly. I truly feel that this Internet encounter has a bigger purpose than I could ever imagine!

    Blessings to both of you!

    Excited to hear from you!
    Tammy Nischan
    http://www.tammynischan.blogspot.com
    http://www.nick7-11.zoomshare.com

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