Don't Struggle Alone

“When Jesus heard about it, He departed from there by boat to a deserted place by Himself. But when the multitudes heard it, they followed Him on foot from the cities. And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick.” (Matthew 14:13, 14)

Jesus was not angry with the multitudes for following Him. He healed the sick who had been brought to Him because He had compassion on them. It is important for us to learn from the example of Jesus’ compassion. We must be ready to relieve others. We must be able to be moved to compassion by the needs of others. Jesus had other things to do. He really needed to focus on preparing the apostles for His death. John the Baptist had recently been executed, and this is what had prompted Jesus to withdraw to a deserted place away from the multitudes. However, Jesus was willing to set aside His concerns to help those who had come to Him.

There is also a lesson to be learned from these people who were diligent to go where their needs could be met. Jesus wants us to lend aid to those who are in need, especially our brethren, but we can’t always know about every need. These people would not have received healing if they had not been diligent to go and ask for help, and Jesus does know about every need. Our brethren may have other things to do, but don’t we know that they would gladly set aside those things to help us if we are struggling? Don’t be afraid to ask for help when we really need it. Don’t worry about inconveniencing the disciples of Jesus.

The devil wants us to believe that our brethren are too busy, or that or needs aren’t important enough. In fact, the devil would love for us to become bitter against our brethren so that he may separate us from their encouragement. Don’t listen to the devil. Listen to Jesus and look to His example. The disciples of Jesus are ready to relieve those who are hurting. The fact that we may need to tell them about our needs doesn’t diminish in any way their willingness or their ability to encourage us tremendously during difficult times in our lives.

It can be hard to admit that we are not able to deal with a situation by ourselves. Maybe the difficulty we are facing is the result of a poor choice on our part. This would be particularly hard to admit to others. However, experiencing situations that we cannot deal with on our own is the reality of this life. These people who came to Jesus couldn’t heal their own sick. All of us came into the world completely unable to care for ourselves. It is reasonable to expect a certain amount of accountability and independence as we grow, but the most accomplished human adult will still be unable to address the problem of sin by themselves. Jesus died on the cross because we could not pay the debt of our sins.

Jesus has done so much for us already. He stands ready to do even more for us, and He hears us when we pray. Yet, Jesus has also arranged it so that His disciples will be there to help those who are in need. The answer to our prayers may very well be a brother or a sister who just needs to know that we need them.