I was lifting weights yesterday.
I suppose I lifted a bit too much -- or for too long --- or on top of an injury --- or something.
No pain, no gain. I know and embrace that. I also know that I can overdo it. There is a balance to it all and sometimes I don't know where the edge is until I've gone over it.
All is well. We break down tissue and the healing brings development, strength, and a host of benefits.
None of those dead weights achieved any benefit from being lifted by me. I received them all. It is different with lifting people. Then, the person lifting and and the person being lifted are both blessed.
So, I thought I'd see what we could do for an acronym on "lift."
L - Love - No to be trite, but if what we do to lift another is not moved by love and enfused with love, nothing positive has happened. It is always about the other person and never about ourselves. When I lift weights, it is about God and me. When I lift people, it is about God and them and I get benefits in a peripheral way.
I - Intuition - How do you know when to encourage, edify, or lend a hand to help? You learn to feel your way through it. You do that by developing the vulnerable art of sensitivity. For some, it comes easy. For others, it is counter-intuitive to be intuitive. However, by slowing down and using all of our senses, we will know when we are needed.
F - Fight - When we lift a weight, we are fighting resistance. The resistance is the weight, but the greater resistance is within us. We press against what seems to be an unmovable force with strength we do not know we possess. And that force retreats. We are lending our shoulders to a soul who does not know he or she can move upward. We are not fighting their battles for them, but with them. We become a team and rejoice with them when they overcome their resistance. In the process, we realize that we have overcome much as well.
T - Today - The question is, and always is, "Who can I lift today?" We make ourselves available and stay available. If we are willing, the one who needs a lift will cross our paths. If will happen because the world is full of people who are struggling. Some are discouraged. Others just need a hand. God will bring you into contact with people who need a lift and with others who will lift you. After all, it is also His work:
1 Samuel 2:8
"He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap; he seats them with princes and has them inherit a throne of honor. "For the foundations of the earth are the LORD's; upon them he has set the world." (NIV)