29 June 2013

Miss Dependent

So I've been thinking. (That's how nearly all of these blog posts being... with the exception of this one, which I'm still obsessed with!)

Have you ever known the person who gives advice to their friends but never takes his own? I think I'm that person. I've never really considered myself an advice-giver.. I usually don't want to be associated with all of the drama that comes with being someone's "go-to" for advice. But I have some advice for myself tonight, and maybe you could use it too.

Dependence is often considered a vice in our society. People are dependent on drugs, on alcohol, on the government, on technology, on their parents. Why are we so quick to desire independence? Teenagers can't wait to turn sixteen to be able to drive or then to go to college and learn to make it on their own. 

Sometimes it's a good thing. But what about when it's not?

A few months ago at work, one of my colleagues told me that he doesn't like to receive gifts because he doesn't want to feel like he owes anyone. We discussed how sad it is to live a life afraid to owe anything to anyone. 

When it comes down to it, we're all really dependent on one another though, aren't we? I drive a car and I put gas in that car... but if no one knew how to get oil from the ground and refine it... well I suppose I'd walk a lot more. I got bit by a dog near my jugular when I was little... I'm sure glad someone went to medical school and knew how to sew that bad boy up! It's summer in Texas and my well-being is 100% dependent on the guy who just installed our new air conditioner. 

There are people who depend on me too. It's a good thing. 

I wonder why I am more comfortable depending on another human than I am depending on Jesus. When was the last time I needed something and I prayed, "Lord, I really need _____. I trust in you to provide it for me. If it's not your will, change my mind and my heart. Amen."
I know I've prayed that prayer before, but I'm not sure if I ever believed in the words I was praying. 

Maybe one of the reasons we're so uncomfortable with religion is because we're uncomfortable depending on God... we're uncomfortable owing Him everything. 

In one particularly important moment of prayer I experienced in college, I remember meditating on the Cross and wondering why He had to die. I remember thinking, "I'm the guilty one... why couldn't I die so that He could have lived?" I remember with clarity Jesus prompting my heart with the notion that my death wouldn't have been enough. He asked me to allow Him to die for me. But then, wouldn't I owe Him my whole self? 

Jesus was nailed to a cross, that is a historical fact. But have I really allowed His death to be for me? If I had, wouldn't I be more comfortable relying on Him with my every single need?

In the Memorare, it is said of Our Lady: never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession was left unaided. How much more so with the Word Incarnate?! 

Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me, a sinner. 

1 comment:

  1. I love your thinking posts!

    Dependence on others can be good or bad, I think. It's bad when boundaries aren't upheld or when the relationship is exploitative. Of course, this is never the case in our relationships with Christ.

    In regard to the colleague who doesn't like to receive gifts: it could be that he was raised in an environment where gifts were given not purely out of love but in the attempt to manipulate, control, or induce guilt or shame. Some hurtful people give gifts that are not really free. What they expect in repayment is far more costly than the gift itself. People raised in environments like that tend to be suspicious of unmerited kindness because it was used against them in the past.