What can a porcupine teach us about caregiving?
In Martin Bell’s book, The Way of the Wolf, he tells the story about a porcupine who was a misfit in society and had no friends:
One day, the porcupine stumbled upon a raccoon who had been shot and was near death. The porcupine remained with the raccoon and heard his sad story. Then both fell silent. After a while the raccoon asked, “Are you still there?”
“Yes,” replied the porcupine, “I’m still here. I was just wondering what to do now.”
“Oh, you don’t have to do anything!” said the dying raccoon. “Honestly, I mean that. Just stay with me for a little while. Just be here. Don’t go away please, I’m afraid. You won’t go away, will you?”
Please believe that 90% of helping is just showing up. . . .just be there!
Dr. Jim Kok, a caregiving pastor based in California says, “Jesus died for us. We die for others when we vacate our comfort zones, the places where we are in control and stand closer to the heartbroken. We may feel helpless, weak and tongue-tied, but we will know that we are partners in doing the right thing. Just be there.”