I’m always surprised how often I need others to help me finish a task well.

I’m not good about asking. I’d rather push through than ask for assistance. Ever since I was a child, I’ve not wanted to look needy.

I was carrying a paddle board back from the beach several days ago. The wind had picked up quite a bit, and I turned in exactly the right direction for it to hit the board and propel me onto a concrete curb.

I hurt all over. But I haven’t wanted to admit it. I don’t want to put anyone out doing something I can do myself.

What I think I can do alone.

I don’t know why I struggle so much in this area. I really enjoy collaborative efforts where many come together to determine a course to follow, to gain a collective IQ to further solving issues. That makes sense.

But seeking others’ help often causes more anxiety than it’s worth. I’m better off doing it myself.

Or so I think.

We had purchased a little water slide for the grands to use in our back yard earlier this summer. A fun time for them on the really hot Florida days.

Blowing it up and filling it with water is not a problem.

The problem occurs when we want to empty and deflate it. There’s no drain.

It’s messy if one person tries to do it alone. The water puddles in one place, making more mud than anything else. And it needs to stay inflated to dry off, so deflating it first is always a wasted effort.

My kids found a solution–a bunch of them stood on the edge of the little pool, sinking it to ground level while one of the guys swept the water out.

In no time at all, the slide was upside down, empty and drying.

Because they chose to work together.

We’re living in a time when it’s easy to distance ourselves from our comments and criticisms of others because social media has made it easy to say things without responsibility for any repercussions. It’s put more distance between us because people are concerned about building their image and don’t care if it’s on the pain they cause others with biting remarks; this doesn’t lay the groundwork for trusting, helpful interactions.

It takes humility to admit we have problems, that we need others, that we don’t have answers to everything. We need to take responsibility for the things we say to others, how we treat others, recognizing we each have needs.

The truth is we all need each other.

God has made us for community, to rely on one another, to support each other when necessary. Strength will always be found in working together. “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:12.

I don’t enjoy appearing needy; it’s humbling to admit that I can’t do life alone. I’m not self-sufficient, my own little island, even though I can act that way at times.

When we lose sight of our need for others, we miss out on who we really are.

We’re made to be a village.

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