I cried out for help this week, beseeching for prayers, laying out my need. It is something that I have learned to do on a regular basis, and have been deliberately doing for more than a decade.
So much so that it is no longer counter-intuitive. It feels really natural to me.
My morning post on facebook sums up my last few days:
“I had a personal crisis this week – found myself in a blur of … Something. But, as is my habit when in the depths, I called out for prayers and cried out for help and the energy and solidness within me is the greatest it has been for more than a year. And I am reminded how we must embrace brokenness in order to climb the mountains.”
You see, I send these emails that probably appear daft. In my weakest moments and my most frail reckonings I let people know, and I ask for prayers.
Some years back now I was facilitating at Freedom Session. It was my third year and the group of women I was facilitating were all stuck on how they were the ‘only ones’.
The only one with this problem. The only one who had suffered that way. The only one who knew this reality. The only one …
(It has got to be the biggest lie in the book, that we are alone, and that no one knows our pain.)
These women continued on throughout the first three months of the program stuck, each one individually, in ‘poor me’, refusing to accept that others had difficulties too, unable to recognize that there was a larger body of people going through the exact same thing.
I got so fed up with this (as it was keeping them from really bonding and utilizing each other in their journey’s), that I took the time to go back to their original information given at the start of the year.
When a person joins Freedom Session, they are presented with a sheet of paper and are asked to check the boxes, check the sentences that describe a part of their life experience and way of being.
These forms are completely confidential except as given to the facilitator of that person. Using the information on these forms I created a bar graph with the list of statements and added up how many had said yes to #1 and colored in the correct number of those responses, and so on.
I did this with all of the questions. And what I found was telling. Every single statement had at least two from the group saying, ‘yes this is me’, and most of the statements had more than half of our group having related and affirmed that experience and statement.
I showed it to my group along with the admonition, “You are not alone in your experience. Right here around this table there are others who have been through the same thing as you. They know what you are talking about.”
It was the breakthrough they needed. And from there progress and authenticity became possible.
They were not alone.
Through my own healing years and the inner journey of my soul, I had learned the same thing. And as a blogger and a writer, and when speaking, I know and really get it, that there is not a thing I might share that is not recognizable to many.
I had learned to simply walk as authentic as possible, and while this was its own journey and process to be sure, the habits of frank honesty were beginning to pay big dividends.
So it was about one-half dozen years ago, after the Lord had been saying to me time and again, with pictures and impressions and the prophetic voices of others, “Your words will affect many all over the world.” that I knew – if this was indeed true – that I would need a team of people praying around me. I would need the support of others, I would need deep intercession on my behalf, and the practical feedback of what has come to be my own personal board of directors.
I planned this, prayed about this, brainstormed who was to be on that team, and waited on the right time to invite and implement this support.
And that time came four years ago this past summer. Each of the six people that I initially asked said yes. And while a few have over the years stepped aside for personal reasons, there have been others immediately there to take their place.
What I didn’t know four years ago, was how much I would be going through, the deep challenges, the profound shifts in my life, and the incredible open doors we are just now getting a handle on, and beginning to experience.
All of this to say, when this week I sent out my SOS prayer email and facebook post, I knew that my despairing depths were simply providing an opportunity to walk yet again in humility, to live out loud in community, and to experience the rich rich outpouring of love and support from others ‘yes’, but most of all, to lavish in the care of the Father.
Today, I am stunned with how much better I feel.
And all this to say: Gather your own supporters around you. Get some people praying for you. And then use them.
In your weakest times, if you can do nothing else squeak out, “Help”.
And in addition to this, ask for guidance, accept the wisdom of others, implore others to give you feedback, and then make changes based on what they say.
If you don’t want to change, if you don’t want transformation, then don’t ask for help.
But if you really want to move forward with your life, get some people around you.
From my own pleas this week, there is support coming on all sides. A number have called, others have booked tea and fresh feedback moments, all in cue of making me stronger.
Fact is, we are not strong in and of ourselves. It takes a community to step out in life, to walk in the reality of our days, and to envision different solutions, possibilities and to see opportunities.
Invest in your own support team today.
I implore you.