Independence is generally considered a good thing in our culture; to be able to do everything on your own without the help of anyone else is generally praised. But let me explain why I have a problem with that.
I spent most of my life not asking anyone for help because I thought I had to be independent. I thought I had to do things on my own if I wanted success. And where did that get me? That got me no where except filled with anger, bitterness, and sadness. I never felt like I could depend on anyone, nor did I ever feel like anyone cared. Trying to do everything on my own got exhausting and at a young age I was stressed and weary. But at the time, I had no hope or faith in an all-powerful God.
Isaiah 40:28-31 –
28 Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
29 He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might he increases strength.
30 Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;
31 but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint.
I can’t do life on my own. I wasn’t created to do life alone. First and foremost, I need to be dependent on God. This world is a scary place and it’s a constant fight. The more I fight to be independent, the more I throw myself into self destruction. God will give me everything I need to make it through this life, if only I’m willing to suck up my pride and ask him for help. Who am I to say that I can navigate this world better than He can, when I’m the created and He’s the creator?
Ephesians 6:10 – Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.
A few weeks ago, in a conversation with a dear friend, out of the blue she said, “You need to depend on God more.” When I heard those words, I lost it. The day had already been rough and emotional, and her statement had me bawling like a baby because she is right. I depend too much on myself and on other people. Without even realizing it, I fall back into the “I can do it” train of thought and I don’t realize it until I crash and burn or someone points it out to me. I get so frustrated and angry with myself when I realize how little I depend on God because I know better. I know the miracles He has done in my life. I have seen His power before my very eyes. I have felt His love and grace in every area of my life. And yet, like the Israelites, I still fail to trust Him even after all I’ve seen Him do. I am all too human.
The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,
my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I want to put God first in every aspect of my life. I want Him and my relationship with Him to be the number one thing on my priority list. But I all too often fail Him. I am so thankful for His grace and mercy when I do fail Him; He continues to still love me and pick me up from the mess I’ve made of my life and guide me in the right direction. He is so faithful to me and has given me way more than I will ever deserve.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 – 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
God didn’t create us to go through this world on our own and He often shows us His love for us through other people. I know that’s what He did for me. I had never seen true, Christ-like love until I met my Celebrate Recovery sponsor. She was the first person to show me what true love looked like and because of her I have been able to receive the love that others have shown me and love them in return. We need each other. We need to love each other and walk through this life together, serving and caring for one another.
John 13:14 – If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.
Romans 12:16 – Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.
My point in all of this is that we can’t do life alone. We can’t live independent of God and one another and expect to still live a happy, fulfilling life. It just isn’t possible. That’s not how we were made. I know, for me, I have to, daily, confess my dependence on God. Daily, I remind myself that I can’t make it through this world without Him and thank Him for the people He has given me to walk this scary road with me. Quit trying to be independent. Suck up your pride and admit your dependence on your Creator – I promise you won’t regret it.