by Holly Ann

Have you ever been pegged as “high-maintenance” or “needy”? When I think of high-maintenance, I get a picture in my head of a modern day Fran Drescher from the 90’s sitcom The Nanny. (Have you got her laugh in your head, yet? You’re welcome!) If Fran is “high” on the maintenance-meter, I’m more of a medium-maintenance kinda gal. But am I needy? Certainly not. I’m a strong, independent woman… or so I once thought.

A couple of weeks ago, Aaron and I were relaxing in the living room after a long day and Ava walked in and jumped into Aaron’s lap, “I haven’t had my hug today.” Aaron pulled her in for a sweet hug and released her.  She gave him a harsh face and said, “Is that it?!” Aaron glanced over at me and said, “Well, she comes by that honestly!”

You see, I have developed a little reputation with my husband when it comes to hugs and goodbyes.  Back in June, Aaron took a quick trip where he would be gone for several days. The sole purpose of this particular getaway was for some uninterrupted time with God. As we were saying our goodbyes, he gave me a kiss and hug with some quick pats to the back. I now would like to pause for dramatic effect and emphasize: pats to the back. This is a pet peeve of mine when it comes to a hug shared between a husband and wife. A good pat on the back during a hug is what “bro’s” do. I collected myself in this moment and acted as if I were not hurt and waved goodbye.

A few minutes later, an alien force took over my body and through tears; I began to text Aaron to communicate how I was feeling. Three words seemed to sum it up: “Your goodbyes suck.” (Ok, not my finest moment and in shame, I share this with you.) He responds with, “Are you serious?!”

I would love to report that I bounced back right away and realized the error of my ways, but that’s just not the case. I was an emotional wreck. I realized I was way out of line, but I couldn’t understand why this particular goodbye affected me so strongly. Thus began some SERIOUS soul searching and MAJOR apologies. What is wrong with me??? Why am I so NEEDY? Why was this goodbye not good enough?

After a couple of days of having a good old fashion pity party, God began to open my eyes to an area in my life that needed correction. I started to retrace many previous goodbyes between Aaron and I. There was a pattern of meltdowns almost every time he would leave for consecutive days. But why?!

Almost 13 years ago, Scott Nesbitt (my first husband) walked out our front door with a kiss and quick goodbye. He was scheduled to return home in time for dinner, but I never got to see him walk back into our house. I never got to see him kiss our sweet daughter again. He was killed in a drowning accident about an hour after he left me.

I now realize that I have a deep seeded fear anytime Aaron leaves for a trip. What if I never get to see him again?

Here are the facts:  I AM NEEDY.

But God, in His great mercy, reminds me that it’s OK to be needy, but I’m not being “needy” about the right things.

1.     I Need HIM!

What if I never realized my need for Christ? What if I thought that doing this life alone in my own strength was enough? I fail every day. My security can’t be in my husband, my church, my job, or my family, but in Christ alone. When I am needy, His eye is on me – looking out for me.

He raises the poor from the dust and lifts the needy from the ash heap. – Psalm 113:7

But as for me, I am poor and needy; may the Lord think of me. You are my help and my deliverer; you are my God, do not delay. – Psalm 40:17

2.      We Need EACH OTHER!

My sweet sisters, I need you!  My heart breaks just like yours. I make mistakes on a daily basis. There are times when I find myself to be incredibly selfish, fearful, judgmental, insecure, etc. I need you and you need me! There’s something so special in friendships where you can totally be yourself – friends that you can laugh with, cry with, and unravel with. But ultimately, I need friends in my life that call sin what it is and point me to Christ and His abounding grace. TOGETHER we are something special.

The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you! – I Corinthians 12:21

If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. – I Corinthians 12:26, 27

3.      We Need to PERSEVERE!

When we get our eyes off of our Jesus—our ONLY genuine, bonafide NEED—we shrink, throw fits, and at times attack those we love because we fear our lack of control. But setting our hearts on the One and Only that fills us up and meets our neediness, then, and only then, we can persevere through anything! A determined living that sets our hearts at peace, through anything big or small.

When the kids have destroyed your house over summer break and your dog continues to get into your bathroom trash…PERSEVERE!

When you’re having a bad hair day and the wrinkles on your face are getting more pronounced…PERSEVERE!

When your husband forgets how much you loathe “bro” hugs… PERSEVERE!

When you feel forgotten, alone, and afraid…PERSEVERE!

You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised. – Hebrews 10:36

And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. – 2 Corinthians 9:8

Friends, don’t think for a moment that we can make it without the Lord. Does that sound cliché? Well, this “cliché” is oh soo true! We NEED Him every hour of every day. We don’t need the perfect hugs from our spouse, or even the promise that they’ll always return home to us, we NEED HIM! In Scripture it says,

Few things are needed – or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be take away from her. – Luke 10:42

Mary chose to be in the presence of Jesus.  She realized her need for Him was greater than any other thing. As I write this today, God Himself is reminding my heart that I need Him. Let’s choose His presence. If you have another moment or two, listen to this song and make this your heart’s cry today.