The server filled my coffee cup and left the table.
I took a sip of coffee and it was much hotter than I expected. Jerking the cup away from my lips, about half of it was spilled on the table.
As I grabbed some napkins to clean up, Stan did the same and said, “Let me help you.”
My rather embarrassed responses was, “No, I’ve got it.” Stan put down his napkins and let me clean up the mess.
When the table was dried of the spilled coffee, Stan said, “What just happened here?”
“I spilled my coffee,” I said rather defensively.
“What else happened?”
“I cleaned it up,” I answered.
“Anything else?” was Stan’s reply.
Knowing he was wanting to get at something I didn’t see, I said, “Go ahead and tell me.”
“I offered my help in cleaning up and you refused that offer,” was Stan’s response.
“So? Did I offend you by that?”
“No, I wasn’t offended,” Stan replied, “but I think there is a real lesson here. A lesson I keep trying to learn myself.”
“I have in me the Holy Spirit.” You, along with every believer, have the same Holy Spirit. Jesus called Him the “Helper.”
Stan continued, “Numerous times each day, the Holy Spirit says to me, ‘Let me help you with such and such.’”
“Way too often, my response is the same as yours was about my offer to help clean up the spilled coffee. I will say, ‘no, I’ve got it.’ I rely on myself and my own abilities, rather than relying on the Helper sent from God to help.”
“If I will only accept His help in everything I face, I will stay on the intended path. When I choose to ignore the Helper and refuse to accept His help, that is when I am on the wrong path, going in the wrong direction.”
“That’s a helpful perspective, Stan,” I replied. “And I can imagine that if a person keeps refusing the offered help, pretty soon the Helper will stop offering His help. Do you think that is true?”
Stan replied, “Not only do I think that is true, I also know that I never, ever, want that to happen. That is why I am constantly asking for and accepting His help.”
But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. John 16:7
Prayer: Lord, you know how terribly self-focused I am, and how I think I can do things on my own without taking into account the Helper you have provided. Please, Lord, lead me in constantly seeking, receiving, and embracing all of the help you have for me in everything, the big and the little. Amen.