I came across a picture the other day that made me smile; okay, it made me laugh. I copy it here for your consideration. And, I suspect that you are at least smiling too!
I don’t know the name of either the photographer or the child nor do I know the name of the considerate canine. But, I do know that the little one could not have had as clear a view of the outside but for the help of his friend.
The ways of helping others are as varied as there are people and needs. We could help a child overcome the fear of water.
We could take care of the wildlife in our sphere of influence.
And we could enable young children to participate in feeding the backyard critters, thereby teaching them that all of God’s creation is important — that we are stewards, not owners!
Often we think that we need to help others by being busy about doing things … hurrying here and there, bustling and caring for others while our frenetic schedules are clamoring for our attention. But, sometimes, helping others means stopping and being still. Sometimes all that is needed is a little help to get a different view of the situation, a new perspective. Sometimes the best help we can give is just being with someone who needs an ear, or a shoulder, or a smile. Take time to pray with them, or cheer for an accomplishment, or perhaps give encouragement to take the next step!
The Bible often talks about helping others. For example:
Acts 20:35: “In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” [NIV]
Philippians 1:18‐19: “Yes, and I will continue to rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help given by the Spirit of Jesus Christ, what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance.” [NIV]
1 Thessalonians 5:14‐15: “And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else.” [NIV]
Lord, in answer to your commands and as I respond to the guidance of the Holy Spirit:
- I pray that I am kind to each person with whom I interact.
- I pray that I will help those I come in contact with who need special attention, whether family, friends or neighbors.
- I pray that my help will address the need of the individual, rather than my own need for recognition.
- I pray that my help will be sacrificial and that it will be done in secret, without concern for receiving thanks.
- I pray that in all things I will bring glory to God and his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, without whom I would, most likely, not be inclined to help at all!