Support bolsters up strength. Nature teaches us this truth. Look at a huge tree able to weather the storms and seasons because it has many deep roots holding it in place. Look at a fruit, unencumbered by winds, it is held tightly to the branch. Look at the birds flying in v-shape, they preserve their energy and are able to fly high and cover long distances because they fly together. Look at herds of wild animals, they can protect themselves because they eat and sleep together. Look at how science try to devise better and stronger materials by designing composite technologies. By combining materials together, a stronger material is created. Look at how bridges and other structures could hold such huge weights over them because they use several beams to hold weights together. They say the “I” or the “H” beams are specially strong and resilient to stresses and strains because the beams when put together in this shape could hold up incredible weights. Picture out then a single beam no matter how strong or solid it may be. Surely, a single beam would just topple down under loads of heavy weight.
Humans too would easily fall down without the hand of another. No matter how self-sufficient or independent we are, life will hand us a lesson on our need for interdependence and interrelatedness. No one can stand alone. The strength never lies in a single person. Strength lies in unity. Strength lies in combined efforts and support.
This brings to mind the story of Moses and Joshua in Exodus 17:8-13 where the Israelites fought against the Amalekites. While Joshua and his men were fighting, Moses, Aaron, and Hur stayed on top of the hill. Moses stood on top of the hill with the staff of God in his hand. When Moses raises his hand, Israel wins but the moment he lowers his hand, the Amalekites start to win. Then, Moses grew exhausted. So what did Aaron and Hur do? They supported Moses.
“But Moses’ hands were heavy; so they took a stone, and put it under him, and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held up his hands, the one on the one side, and the other on the other side. His hands were steady until sunset. Joshua defeated Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword.”– Exodus 17:12-13 (WEB)
Israel defeated the Amalekites that day not because of one man. They gained victory not because of a single person. They won because they all supported one another. Most especially was how Aaron and Hur held up Moses’ arms when he was too weary to raise them on his own.
A threefold cord is not quickly broken. The verses on Ecclesiastes quickly came to my mind as I praise the Lord for my “praying” friends.
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow; but woe to him who is alone when he falls, and doesn’t have another to lift him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have warmth; but how can one keep warm alone? If a man prevails against one who is alone, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”– Ecclessiastes 4:9-12 (WEB)
These past 2 weeks had been quite a difficult battle for my family. We went through “the flu” and it was scary. I called it “the flu” because we were not sure if we had the usual flu or if covid already ravaged us because we did not take swab test for fear of the lock downs and isolation that it brings. But, the symptoms and the sickness sent us questioning if we could live through it or survive it as fear settled when we hear cases of people dying in our City because of covid or covid complications.
But this is a story of victory, hope, and goodness. It is in these moments of hardship and life and death experience that we have realized all the more how support of others, from friends and family, brings mental and emotional strength. It is like a potion of healing. I call them my “praying friends” because they prayed for us in hard-core faith, tenacity, and persistence. God taught me, more than ever, how we need each other and how simple “how are yous” could spark life and motivation. I praise God for their daily encouragements and messages. There were days when my husband and I were already doubting if we could surpass the ordeal because it does not seem to go away, but every time we receive their messages and their care, we also receive hope and strength.
Never step back from the opportunity to encourage, pray, and help others. Especially in these difficult times, many people need a word of comfort. There is power in your simple care. There is strength in your support no matter how small it may seem to you. It has tremendous effect. Aaron and Hur were just two persons standing at Moses’ sides and holding up his arms. Not an extravagant or extraordinary act, it may seem. But it was their simple act that led Israel to victory.
My “praying friends”, it was all your small acts of care that led us to victory. I praise God for each of your life.