Being the only girl in our family of four children, I was raised to be strong, independent, and self-reliant. Living with three brothers, I learned quickly how to stand my own ground. In fact, one saying our father coined in our family was, “You gotta be tough.” So, I was.
My loving parents did everything they could to prepare and equip me to be able to take care of myself when I got out in the real world. That included changing my own flat tire, pumping my own gas, balancing my checkbook, and cooking, cleaning, and the like. They taught me to work hard, to stand up for what I believed in, and that nothing was impossible for me to achieve.
Maybe it was because of my independent spirit or my self-reliant attitude that for a long season in my life I believed I could handle most anything and everything on my own. I wasn’t one to ask for help, and I certainly didn’t want to appear like I needed any. Goodness no!
That changed the day my father died.
Life, as I knew it, came to a standstill. The pain of my heartache was excruciating, and I buckled under the weight of my grief. This was well beyond what I could handle, and it didn’t take me long to understand this was something I couldn’t bear on my own.
Friend, I pray you have not experienced such heartache and grief in your life. I pray you’ve never lost anyone so close and so dear to you. But, if you have, I’m sorry. I’m so very sorry. I imagine you might be able to relate to and understand such brokenness and pain.
God, however, met me in ways I never could have expected. At times I could almost feel Him holding me in my heartbreak and pain. That verse is true about Him being close to the brokenhearted. He provided a handful of friends who came alongside to help carry me and my grief. God taught me it’s okay and acceptable to allow others to help, and it can be a blessing to ask for it.
We weren’t meant to travel this road of life alone.
We need each other.
Read with me Ecclesiastes 4:9-12:
Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
God didn’t design us to walk this road of life on our own. You and I are designed for community. We are fashioned to do life with those around us. To walk alongside each other, to lift, to bless, to serve, to infuse hope. To encourage one another in our God-sized dreams and to do life with each other.
We need each other.
We already know life is a precious gift. But, it becomes even more special when it’s shared with others. A life shared becomes more than it could ever be on its own.
But, what if you find yourself alone? What if you don’t feel you’re a part of a community, or you feel you don’t need one? What then? My best suggestion is to pray. Whatever situation you find yourself in regarding community, I encourage you talk with God about it. He has the answers no one else has, and if you’re desiring community, He has one just perfect for you.
A bond grew between me and those friends who traveled that road of grief alongside of me. They became the community I didn’t know I needed. A community placed in my life by God, Himself. A community that helped me dream again. And, a community I can’t imagine my life without.
Friend, we are made for community. We need each other.
Shared by: Julie Lefebure