Some are funny, some are wise, and some pertain towards wisdom. We all have to wade through quotes and memes on our social media feeds which our friends are busy circulating. I think most of us let these wash over us without engaging but sometimes it’s important to pause and think about what the deeper root of some of the messages we are getting is.
Here’s a quote that popped up in my feed recently:
I’d rather struggle and work hard for everything than have someone tell me “You wouldn’t have that if it wasn’t for me”.
This got a few likes and I can kind of see why but when you stop to think about it the message is kind of stupid. Like we should keep kids at home rather than sending them to school. That way they can teach themselves to read because that’s better than accepting help from a teacher.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not against hard work and people achieving things themselves – but clearly there are times when we are better off accepting help from other people. Does that make us failures? No, it means we are human and that we work better together as a society than in isolation from one another. Almost like God designed us to be a community or something…
Does accepting help mean we owe that person something?
Well, giving help is another issue. I’d like to think most of us give help for the same reason – to be helpful! We don’t consider ourselves owed anything except possibly a simple thank you.
But of course there are some who give help to get back, as displayed in the statement “You wouldn’t have that if it wasn’t for me”. Well to be honest, I don’t really see that as help so much as someone looking to make a trade of services. Trying to turn a gift into a trade after it’s given. That’s just poor business!
We need to think about how we help and accept help. Because we all need help at some point, and pretending otherwise just makes things difficult for ourselves, and deprives others of the pleasure of helping. And we all have the ability to help others, and should do so freely, without condition.
After all, that’s what Jesus did for us.