Endless Cycle

short circuit
photo credit: Unsplash

The majority of our towels were used to mop up streams of water running along our tile floor. Once the leak was taken care of and the floor dried, I loaded the towels into the washing machine.

The machine filled, agitated, spun a little and filled again. This cycle repeated for the next several hours. We tried everything we could think of to get to the end of the cycle, including shaking the machine and pushing the buttons numerous times.

Eventually we unplugged the machine. It hadn’t been used for awhile and we thought maybe it overheated and needed a rest.

For the next two days we were stuck in this endless cycle. The lid was locked and our towels were trapped. This happened on a holiday weekend so we had to wait until Tuesday to contact a repairman.

The problem was quickly discovered and a part ordered to replace the faulty one. Nothing we did during the past few days could have made a difference when something inside, where we couldn’t see it, had short circuited.

Have you ever been caught in an endless cycle? No matter what you try, a satisfying conclusion seems to be out of your reach. I know it’s happened to me.

It may be that something beyond our limited vision is broken. When trying the same thing over and over doesn’t work, a new approach is needed. I have had to acknowledge the situation is out of my control and seek outside assistance. Sometimes the smartest thing to do is to ask for help.

Just like with my washing machine, the fix isn’t always instantaneous. The waiting period teaches me patience and I have confidence the end result will be worth the wait.

“I Got Dis!”

#God, #inspiration, prideAlthough I couldn’t see anyone, the voices from a nearby changing room could be heard clearly.

It sounded like a mother and child. Mom was engaging her child in cheerful conversation. “Can you count? How old will you be on your birthday?” A happy little voice answered, “Three!”

Moments later the mom said, “Do you need some help?” The answer that quickly followed was, “No, I got dis.”

I chuckled as I thought of young children asserting their independence by wanting to do everything by themselves. Even though they need help, they struggle through on their own. It takes patience to stand by and watch when we know we could make things so much easier for them.

I know that I am still guilty of this type of behaviour. Even when assistance is readily available, I don’t ask for it. Isn’t asking for help a sign of weakness? Actually, it’s more a sign of strength. It takes self-confidence to admit I could use help. In many cases, refusing help denies someone of the pleasure they would receive from assisting me.

God is always ready and willing to help. He shows immeasurable patience to watch me struggle with my independence and not call out to him. He is able to do much more than I could ever hope or imagine on my own. When I truly understand this, I let go of my stubborn pride and call out to him.

His wisdom will guide me through any situation I may encounter. Knowing this, it would be foolish to say, “No thanks, I’ve got this!”

If any of you needs wisdom to know what you should do, you should ask God, and he will give it to you. God is generous to everyone and doesn’t find fault with them. (James 1:5 GWT)

Shoveling Snow

shoveling snow photoThe snow was still falling when I went out to shovel. There had been quite an accumulation in the previous hours and the sidewalk and driveway needed to be cleared. This was normally my husband’s job, but he was unable to do it this time so it was up to me.

As I removed the first few shovelfuls, I was happy at how much easier it was than I had first thought. Self congratulations were short lived though, as it seemed the longer I worked, the heavier the snow seemed to become. There was the same amount on the shovel each time, so I found it interesting that the load became heavier the more times I carried it off to the side. As I struggled, I saw a man across the street clearing the sidewalk with a snow blower. Part of me wanted to ask for his assistance. The other part wouldn’t let me ask for help. It would be different if he noticed that I was struggling and offered to help. That didn’t happen, so I carried on, feeling sorry for myself as my back screamed out in protest of the heavy loads.

Later, as I reflected on this, I realized there was a relationship between shoveling snow and my life. When I just have a few burdens, they may be a nuisance, but they are not too heavy to carry. Unfortunately, like the snowfall, if not dealt with they multiply making it ever more difficult to bear the load. When I struggle under this weight alone, not only do I suffer physically, but my emotional state is not pleasant. What I sometimes forget is that I do not have to do it on my own. Help is available if I just ask for it. Jesus is just a prayer away and when called upon will always send someone or something to lighten my load.

A person standing along can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. Ecclesiastes 4:12 New Living Translation