Wednesday, August 13, 2008

"Help, I've fallen and I can't get up!"

You know exactly the commercial I'm talking about don't you? How long has it been, ten years or more? Surprisingly, I saw a remake of that commercial this morning.
But it's not funny any more as I had a mom who lived alone, and kept falling, and therefore wore one of those devices.

We surround ourselves with people so that, should some injury befall us, we are not alone. But the fact is that millions do live alone, and do need what these services supply; someone that can be called on in case of an emergency, someone who will offer assistance.
I doubt that a single one of those millions who live alone ever thought they would get to the place where they would be needing to wear a pendant in case of an emergency.
None of us do.
Children aren't the only ones who think they're invincible.
There's a very good chance that one day many of us will be sporting the same taste in jewelry...
So now, while you are on your feet, what can you do for those who aren't?
This question cuts both literally and spiritually.
Are there people you know for whom you can just do things? A ride to the store or help with a project? A visit to fill some of those hours they are awake and alone. Of perhaps even a card or a call to add some joy to their day.
And what about those who are not obviously elderly or in need of assistance?
What about the fact that so many around us are carrying burdens alone?
Thoreau is famous for his observation that "the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation." I know that has been true in my life at times, so I'm thinking it's safe to assume that for many of us.
And let's go one level harder and deeper.
What about those who have fallen and can't get up? In our churches, in our immediate circle of contacts. What about the family member with the substance abuse or financial mismanagement or the dissolution of a marriage or a family? Their failure is obvious so what will be our response? Will it be that of standing over them and saying "Now what did you go and do that for?".
Twice paramedics needed to be come to my mom's house and their approach was simple. They asked what happened and then started taking care of her injuries, helping, and assisting to get her to a place where she would be healed so that she could be back on her feet.
The person on the floor doesn't need you to tell them where they are, or how foolish it was for them to be there.
Let us be the ones who come alongside and help get them back on their feet.
Why?
Well simply becasue you were once found when you had fallen, and were unable to lift yourself up to be worthy of a holy God and a place in heaven. Jesus came and with a nail scarred hand and reached down and helped you to your feet and set you on a course for heaven and you were shown abundant and undeserved mercy.
God has told us that we are to go out into our world and let our hands be His hands, and from our mouths come the words He would speak, and to be busy about showing His love to our present generation through how we live our lives and love our God.
Be the one who responds when someone has fallen and can't get up: both because of the love God has shown to you and the strength with which He has currently enabled you.
Who is not to say that one day we may be in the same place, either because the infirmity of our age or because we have knocked down by circumstances or a temptation too strong for us to combat and at that time we'll need a button to push, a friend to call, someone who will love and lead us to a place where we are on our feet again.

1 comment:

Mare said...

Amen!
What a blessing to stumble upon your blog.