Leaning On Others

Photo by Håkan DahlströmI am a fiercely independent person. My past has made me this way, and I do not find it a hindrance. It is difficult for me to ask for help, but I am getting better at it.

It came to me the other day that sometimes we may need help in order to regain our footing. Just as you may need someone standing on solid ground to help you up after a fall on the ice.

My church lost our minister to suicide this summer. We’ve been without ministers before, because we seem to have a revolving door in our pulpit. I’ve been with the church for nearly 20 years, and have seen them come and go.

But this time it was different. I was touched to read the emails sent to the congregation. Particularly from the churches in the same city – all of different faiths and traditions, many whose pastors/rabbis/ministers offered help. And the churches of our denomination in the region have reached out to support us. Various ministers, ministerial interns and retired ministers have all volunteered to fill our pulpit. Often they drive two hours each way to be with us on Sundays.

We could have gotten by without the help…like I said, we’ve had times when we had to rely on the congregation to fill the pulpit before.

But it has been very comforting and nice to be helped until we regain our footing. It makes me feel like I am part of a greater whole. And it gives us some structure to work through the grief, search and continuity.

Yes, we have fallen on the ice. But with the support of those around us, we will be back on our feet again soon.


Photo by Håkan Dahlström

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