For some people, giving friends or even strangers a helping hand is almost a reflex of their own nature. Most of the time the helping hand is given in areas that are outside of the person such as projects or errands. These “helping” types often attempt to use their helpful qualities to assist others heal internally. That’s a good thing, but the helpful should understand that external help and internal healing are distinct. Helping others heal from spiritual or emotional scars is not the same as helping someone change a flat tire on the side of the road. Healing requires consistency and genuineness. It’s not an easy or a speedy process. It will take pureness of motive and time.
“God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them” - Hebrews 6:10
Don’t Be Discouraged
Sometimes your kindness, love or encouragement may not always yield the proper response from those that you share it with. Don’t be discouraged and don’t stop being you. There is a chance that their lack of proper response is connected to what you may represent to them. If you represent (subconsciously) a paternal figure, a former spouse, or a friend that has hurt, betrayed or abandoned them, your goodness is suspect.
Stay The Course Don’t be offended by their skepticism or resistance. They are not rejecting you with malice. Painful memories are at work. Hurt people tend to be attracted to those who don’t care, because those that were supposed to care have disappointed them. If you can, stay the course, your genuineness will become clear or their pain will keep them bound in a world of insecurity and barriers. They need your genuine heart to outlast their healing process. You can’t help everybody, but you can try to help someone realize that genuineness, love, loyalty and honor still exists.
“A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed” Proverbs 11:25
Be Tender and Tough Sometimes pain creates backbiting and manipulation in people who are hurt. Those traits, along with other forms of distorted thinking, must be confronted if healing is going to happen. The prepackaged responses (defense mechanisms) must be brought to light with both tenderness and toughness. Those healing must come to the revelation that the pain they have experienced has had a negative impact on their view of life and people.
“Faithful are the wounds of a friend, But the kisses of an enemy are deceitful” Proverbs 27:6
Final Thought Helping others should never be done from a perception of self-superiority. Helping others heal is not about what’s better about you or your life. It’s about getting them to see what’s better about them and the world around them. It is to ignite hope so that they can have peace and become intelligently vulnerable. It is to help them bring down unnecessary barriers while upholding healthy boundaries.
Reflection by: Pastor Luis Vergara
*Image retrieved from internet