On Being Needy

Needy. We know it’s not healthy to carry our need, our burden, always in front of us, for our needs to be forefront in our thoughts, our words, our conversations. It’s an unhealthy extreme, but sometimes in trying to stand our distance from that extreme we live in another. Sometimes I live with the idea that I should refuse help when it’s offered, that when people offer help they probably don’t actually mean it, and that I should keep my real needs to myself. It’s not a healthy way to live.

I’ve lived that way with my Nano, too. A few weeks ago I was feeling bad for getting so much help from him with the girls and with housework when I feel like that’s my responsibility and I voiced that to him, and he told me something that’s been sitting on my heart ever since. He told me that when I say things like that it makes him feel like I don’t think of us as a team. He said that when I ask him not to help, I’m asking him to stop showing me love through service when he delights in loving me that way. He asked me to be more needy.

Needy… It caught my attention when he said it because needy is the word that has been on my mind since Liesel’s birth. It’s what He’s teaching me through Liesel, through my helpless baby who needs me.

When I’m at my lowest, being needy brings the sweetest refreshment. Because needy is the word we go through to get to God. Our need drives us to find a Savior. And daily, our need takes us to the only place we can find real refreshment… C. S. Lewis said it: “I pray because I can’t help myself. I pray because I’m helpless. I pray because the need flows out of me all the time- waking and sleeping. It doesn’t change God- it changes me.”

Need also produces friendship. I like to know that I can help someone through their needs, but often I’m not as willing to be helped myself. And when I find myself lonely could it be my own doing? Could it be me to proud to go to people with my real emotional needs?

Everyone wants to know their life has a purpose. Knowing that gives our life meaning, it gives us energy to live another day. But, when I refuse to let others help me, I refuse to let them fill a purpose where they had the eyes to see that they could be useful. Perhaps, sometimes, I refuse the blessings God is trying to give me through them.

When I refuse to believe people, refuse to believe that my brother’s and sisters in Christ really do want to help me, I’m refusing to think of us as a body. I’m refusing to trust. But we are a body and when I’m hurting the whole body hurts. They may not know why they are hurting, but because we are one, the hurt will be there for them too. No matter how much they want to help, the rest of the body may not know how to help the hurt, but how can I expect them to, if I don’t speak it.

So here’s to being needy, because sometimes we need that, sometimes the whole body needs me to be a bit needy. We need each other. We need Him. Here’s to admitting that and having the courage to live it.

My prayer is that you find God's grace pouring through your insecure moments. In this audio series, you'll receive a few quiet minutes of encouragement each month free in your email inbox. I hope it helps you find sweet gifts inside the feelings.

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