“You need someone and someone needs you. To make this thing called
life work, we have to lean and support. And relate and respond. And
give and take. And confess and forgive. And reach out and embrace.”
-- Charles R. Swindoll
I don’t really enjoy admitting my mistakes. Frankly, I’d often
rather deny some things I’ve said or done rather than to come clean
with them. I wrote recently about me inadvertently filling my car
with racing gasoline. Obviously this was nothing tragic, just dumb
and fairly costly on my part. Rather than avoiding telling others,
I’ve learned that God does something interesting when I confess my
faults or failings. In some cases it leads to something light like
laughter, but in other instances, it has led to freedom, forgiveness
or feeling closer to others.
God has showed me in numerous creative ways that the sooner I
share more of my weaknesses, the sooner I can experience his
strength. The quicker I am honest about how I’m hurting, the better
chance I have of healing. I can be such a slow learner and sometimes
I wait longer than I need to ask for help.
More than a month ago, I enjoyed a fun, albeit unusual day, which
involved moving furniture as well as a slight fender-bender. The day
also included a stressful situation with friends, but there were
highlights, too. I’m not sure if it was any of those specifics, or a
combination of many things, but later it finally dawned on me that my
neck and lower back were not feeling quite normal. Actually, they
were tight and uncomfortable.
I finally decided to go to my chiropractor and I explained the
situation and my symptoms. “How long ago did this happen?” he asked
with a knowing smile. I answered and he said, “Well, Cindy, that’s
quicker than I thought. You’re learning.”
He suggested that if I wanted to feel better quickly, I should see
him more consistently for awhile and also to have a massage to loosen
some tight muscles.
I wrestled with that idea for awhile because it seemed
self-indulgent, but a counselor friend of mine explained to me that
we all need to know when to be responsible to take care of ourselves,
whether our “self-care” be physical, emotional, mental or spiritual.
He also said there is a time to ask for help from others,
something I am not also quick or eager to do. I decided to get a
massage, which helped tremendously.
Lori, the massage therapist, mentioned she’s learned there is an
important balance and connection between helping others as well as
letting others reach out to her.
“I have to receive from others so that I can give my best,” Lori
I heard a message in the massage.
That is obviously only a minor example, but it encouraged me to
step outside my comfort zone and ask a wise friend to give me her
counsel about an issue in my life. I’m slowly learning that when I
need help, it’s best when I ask God as well as trusted others.
I’m also learning that the sooner, the better.
And you can quote me on that.
* CINDY TRANE CHRISTESON is a Newport Beach resident who speaks
frequently to parenting groups. Her column runs on Fridays. She may
be reached via e-mail at email@example.com or through the mail at
P.O. Box 6140-No. 505, Newport Beach, CA 92658.