In 1972, Bill Withers released his iconic song, Lean on me. This song has a message that echos through the decades, as it speaks to our need of others.
The truth is, everyone needs community. It’s the way God designed us and at some point, we’ll need people to help us, move forward. No one is exempt and when we embrace this reality, the better we’ll be.
If you think about it, no one has done anything significant, without others helping them. Furthermore, along the way, we need someone to lean on, to keep going. This is because we have those moments where we want to quit, give up and walk away. But many times, the greatest miracles come when we get to the other side of those feelings. I believe, we’re one prayer away from a miracle!
One of the verses in the song says,
“Lean on me, When you’re not strong
And I’ll be your friend, I’ll help you carry on…
For it won’t be long, Till I’m gonna need somebody to lean on.”
Notice in the verse, how both people will need someone to lean on. It’s not just one way. When we’re in community, we need to lean on each other. There will be times one of us is strong and the other isn’t. Then, other times, it’s reversed. This speaks of a mutual leaning as co-laborers for Christ.
This is what the Bible speaks about in Galatians 6:2-3. It says,
“2. Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. 3. If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important.”
This is the Bible’s way of saying, “Lean on me.”
We’re commissioned to share each other’s burdens, and in doing so, we obey Jesus. Period! This is not only needed, it’s a command from God, and it’s for all of us to do.
We don’t have to be Super-spiritual, Bible scholars, or perfect Christians to do this. All we need to do, is let people lean on us and then we lean on them. What we need is humility to lean on others, and humility to let others lean on us.
Then in verse three, we’re told, if we think we’re above this, we’re foolish and we’re fooling ourselves. We are not above it because, we all need someone to lean on.
It’s vital for us to remember, we are not better than other people, and the idea of community is equally important for all of us. This is why groups are needed, serving on the dream team is needed, being a giver financially is needed and being in a local church is needed, for our faith. All of this helps us be interconnected with what God is doing and furthermore, lean on each other.
But It’s hard to lean on someone, when you’re not close to someone.
Islands don’t work in community; therefore, we must choose be close to others. We have responsibility in doing this, and we must do our part, so others can do their part. We can’t afford to wait on others or to blame them. Our job is to do what we can do, which empowers others to do what they can do.
So, who are you leaning on?
If it’s the right people, they are pointing you to Jesus and it’s my hope, you would do the same for them. So today, let someone lean on you and furthermore, find someone to lean on too. This is the will of God and when we do, we’ll have the strength to move forward.
Practically moving forward, I encourage you with two things.
First, choose to be IN a local church, and not just go to a local church. Meaning, be engaged with what’s happening and be involved. Meet people. Be friendly and take a step to have people in your life.
Second, take the first step. This is important because when we wait for others to do it, we won’t do it. We have to step out and initiate community. This means, go to a group, or stay after church and talk to someone new. Join the dream team and meet people that serve alongside you. Move toward it, and it will move toward you.
Remember, we don’t know we need community until we need community.
Lean on me! Pass it on!