The Need To Be Needed

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We often use this phrase today: “She (or He) is needy,” meaning insecure enough to ‘need’ an overabundance of attention from another human being.

It’s difficult to interact with people who have learned from negative experience not to trust. If you ignore or avoid them, they will be hurt by your rejection, and may get frantic, desperate or spiteful.

Clingy behavior puts a strain on any relationship. We don’t want to suffocate another with our insecurities, but the fact is each of us needs to be needed. Can you imagine what it would be like if nobody needed you?

Most of us wake up each morning thinking about our family, our job–the people who need us. But what if you woke up each day feeling totally alone, with no one to talk to or turn to? What if you were separated from your family? What if you thought that no one cared whether you lived or died?

Today, too many Americans feel this way. They don’t see themselves as unique, or important, or loved. Once, during a very difficult time in my life, I came close to feeling that way, too, until I realized I still had my faith, and that God loved me. The impact of God’s love struck me not only through prayer, but through His loving bombardment of seemingly unrelated incidents. Those incidents yanked me away from my self, and shoved me back into life.  I even heard songs on the radio in a different way. Often, I heard a challenge.  Sometimes the lyrics soothed my wounded feelings like a salve.

The measure of what we do in our lives depends on whether it threatens or enhances our life and dignity as well as the life and dignity of other human beings. Do we see ourselves and others as precious? Do we really understand that people are more important than things?

See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are. 1John 3:1

If we carry God’s love within us–and we do–then don’t we have an obligation to show others, especially the lonely, that they are also children of a merciful God?

Is there an action we could perform as a group or individually that would say to them, “We need you!”? What do you think their reaction might be?

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Copyright 2014 Kaye Hinckley

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