This is a guest post by my college roommate and best friend, Nicole Holmes.
Confession: I’m a big, fat liar … to myself.
Last week, my kids were bickering in the other room. I heard my 7-year-old daughter, who is known for her flair for the dramatic, say to her 9-year-old brother, “that’s a big fat lie.” In this case, it was a misunderstanding about a LEGO battle. But it made me think about big, fat lies.
Here’s a big, fat lie I’ve been believing: “if I can fit it all in, I can do it all.”
Here’s its favorite companion, “I’m fine.”
And, another one of my ‘regulars’: “if I keep trying, I can make it work.”
When I was expecting my first child, I’ll never forget the “I’m in labor” feeling while driving around Wilmington, North Carolina looking for a cherry ICEE before going to the doctor’s office. By the time I arrived at the office and a sweet lab technician noticed the strained look on my face and got me to an exam room, I was in active labor. The doctor said, “Go to the hospital NOW … I’ll meet you there!”
My husband drove me the short 5-minute trek from the doctor’s office to the hospital. Due to construction, we parked a long way from the hospital entrance. With arms full of pillows and overnight bags, we were trudging to the door, stopping every couple of minutes when the labor pain was REALLY BAD. A hospital employee pulled up in a golf cart and said, “I can give you ride.” My immediate response: “I’m fine – I can walk.” Even though I was stumbling in pain, scared to death, and drenched in sweat, I still thought I could do it. It was a big, fat lie.
Satan is the father of lies (John 8:44) and he plays to our weaknesses and feeds our idols. He’s evil and he’s smart (2 Corinthians 11:3).
If I’m honest, my biggest idols are self-sufficiency and perfectionism. I don’t need your help. I’m fine. I’ve got this.
- Have you ever stood among mounds of laundry and piles of toys and known you’ve needed help and still said, “I’m fine”?
- Have you been in over your head at work and yet turned away offers of help from colleagues?
- Have you ever been a total mess, and just kept driving your kids from activity to activity, even when you knew the right thing to do was STOP and REST?
- Have you ever felt like your schedule was bursting at the seams and still said “yes” when you were asked to serve on another volunteer committee?
- Have your ever faced a new day exhausted, overwhelmed, and not sure how you will make it to bedtime?
To all of the above, I answer, “YES!”
When your idol is self-sufficiency, it is hard to ask for help. I have to remember that God created me to need Him (Isaiah 41:10). He created me to need other people (Hebrews 6:2). When I’m turning away help, then I’m refusing to let others do what they were made to do (1 Peter 4:10; Romans 12:4-5; Proverbs 11:25).
So, I’m ditching the big, fat lies. I’m going to tell the truth.
“The LORD detests lying lips, but he delights in those who tell the truth.” Proverbs 12:22
Do I need help? YES
Here are some changes I’m making for the New Year. Will you join me?
- Let’s start the day seeking help from true source of life and help (Psalm 121:1-2). I’m using the First5 app by Proverbs 31 Ministries to kick-off my mornings (http://first5.org/).
- Let’s #celebrateweakness and share honestly when we need help (Do you want to cook dinner for me? I’ll take it!).
- Let’s practice the “slow yes and the quick no” with a focus to “do less, but better” (check out Essentialism by Greg McKeown and The Best Yes by Lysa Terkuerst).
I’m already seeing the improvements! Relationships grow when I share honestly where I need help. God blesses the quiet minutes of the morning dedicated to Him. My schedule gains breathing room when I say “no” to nice, but not needed activities. There is freedom and great reward in telling the truth!
Nicole Holmes was born and raised in North Carolina, and is passionate about people, power markets, and great customer experiences. She is a professional procrastinator, a recovering maximizer, and mom x2. Nicole is thankful for God’s great grace and his unfailing love: “Because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.” – Lamentations 3:22. Follow Nicole on Twitter @NicoleKHolmes1