As I watch a team that needs help, I realize that there are three keys in the process that I rarely think about. First, one needs to realize that help is needed. Without this, you will never see, recognize, or do anything with the help that is available.
Second, others need to be willing to help. Help could come in the form of an individual, community, or institution. Whatever the source, help by definition is from one to another.
Third, the part I often forget, one has to keep accepting help. It is rarely a one-time event. Help is often a process. It is an ongoing recognition that one is not self-sufficient. It is a state of being. The first two steps occur in a repeating cycle, trigger by a willingness on both sides to work for a greater good.
I am not bold enough to suggest that I am critical of the team. I recognize their actions because it is close to what I often see in the mirror. It is familiar and scary at the same time. As easy as it is to suggest that they open themselves up, I also recognize that this is, for me, a difficult, sometimes impossible step.
In an old story there was a note reflecting a standing request; “send reinforcements from Holy Hill, dispatch from Zion fresh supplies.” (Psalm 20.2) In this case the character was open. He had taken the step, much like I did with a coffee grower, to have supplies sent on a regular basis. He knew he could use the help. He understood he had a better chance of winning with it.
I hope the current choice of going it alone changes. I sense that things will need to get more difficult before the team decides that help is needed. It takes courage to open one’s self to the idea of more. It takes strength to start a conversation without answers. For those willing, a prize is waiting. Your chance of winning will increase. You will experience being part of something bigger than yourself.