I sat in the parking lot for hours as my dear friend sobbed over her broken marriage. She was lost, hurting, confused, unsure of the future. I sat and listened and loved her.
One week later, I was the one crying and pouring my heart out to her in grief as I watched my child begin to walk the prodigal path. Now I was the one lost, hurting, confused, and unsure of the future. She listened and loved me.
I cannot fix her marriage. She cannot promise my child will begin to make better choices.
What we can do is hold each other up in the midst of this crazy life.
I love the picture God gives us in Exodus 17. The Israelites had just left captivity. On top of all the difficulties that come with trying to survive in a barren desert, the Amalekites—an unrelenting enemy—pursued them. Moses told Joshua to choose some men and go fight while he stood on the hill with the staff of God.
“So Joshua fought the Amalekites as Moses had ordered, and Moses, Aaron and Hur went to the top of the hill. As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning.
When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up—one on one side, one on the other—so that his hands remained steady till sunset.
So Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword.”
I love that.
I don’t know about you, but I certainly don’t feel “steady” when in the thick of battle…especially when I’m trying to do it on my own. Embarrassment. Feelings of failure. Not wanting to be a burden to others. These emotions often keep me isolated, left to fight my battle alone while trying to maintain the appearance of peace.
It is utterly exhausting.
But when I share that struggle with my trusted friends, my heart is steadied and my strength renewed.
We all have battles to fight. And we all grow weary of the fight. That is why it is so important that we have some friends to hold up our arms when our strength wanes. Friends that understand the battle before us. Friends that are invested in our success. Friends that will give us a place to rest our weary bodies and will join us in our battle.
That is your tribe, your true community.
Don’t try to fight through this life alone. Be honest and open with your tribe. Let them see the battles you face. Let them help you through the fight.
Trust me. It makes all the difference in the world.
“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another.” ~Hebrews 10:24-25
Author: Angela P.
Between being the wife of a Denver Police Officer and mom to three teenage boys, coupled with her own battles with auto-immune illnesses, Angela has seen first hand the goodness of God time and time again. She is passionate about helping those who are experiencing similar struggles find hope and healing through Jesus Christ.