Dear Mama Friend: Trouble Me

trouble me

I spent my teenagerhood and college years in the 1990s, and one of my favorite 90s songs is Trouble Me by the 10,000 Maniacs. (Seriously, Mamas, if you don’t know it, go look it up on iTunes or Amazon Music or YouTube. DO IT.) The opening lyrics go like this:

Trouble me, disturb me with all your cares and you worries.
Trouble me on the days when you feel spent.
Why let your shoulders bend underneath this burden when my back is sturdy and strong?
Trouble me.

Clearly it’s not a faith-based song (if you know the 10,000 Maniacs they tell some amazing folk tales though!) but it has always reminded me of the scripture “Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ (Galatians 6:2).”

I’ve been on a 90s kick recently, and the song Trouble Me has been in my head often. I find myself humming it while I work and belting it out while I’m driving my mom minivan. I’m thankful for the words, and for the story the song tells. Because as a mom, I have a hard time asking for help. I think chances are, you do too. Our pride keeps us from opening up to each other and admitting we need help. Our shame over the fact that we need it all urges us, in its ugly, threatening voice, to keep our needs to ourselves.

But mama friends, I need you to trouble me.

Because the truth is, helping you with your trouble helps me with mine.

Reaching beyond myself (and you, beyond yourselves) is healthy. Reaching out a helping hand even when my hands are full takes my focus off of myself, where it is really never supposed to be. Turning my eyes and heart to you in your hour of need, my friends, ultimately turns my eyes to Christ. Because if I’ve rendered help to you, I’ve rendered it to Him.

So to the friend who reached out last week when one child was in the hospital and desperately needed help with transportation for her other child: thank you.

To my friend who texted me this morning asking me to unite with her in prayer over her situation: thank you.

To the friend who will tell me when she is not okay, and will ask me if I am, the one who really wants to know the answer: thank you.

To the friend who posts on Facebook about her unending grief over the loss of her mom: thank you.

Why let your shoulders bend underneath this burden when my back is sturdy and strong?

Mamas, today I challenge you to set aside your pride, and I will commit to setting aside mine. When I need prayer, I will ask. When I need someone to take my child to and fro, I will ask. When I need help at work, I will ask.

When I am confused, hurting, grieved, or lost, I will tell you. I will reach out.

And mama friend, I pray that you will in turn, trouble me.

Because you and I were made to bear one another’s burdens, by a God who loves us more than we could ever know, One who understands every little things we are going through.

Trouble me, disturb me with all your cares and you worries.
Speak to me and let our words build a shelter from the storm.
Lastly, let me know what I can mend.
There’s more, honestly, than my sweet friend, you can see.
Trust is what I’m offering if you trouble me.

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Jenny Rapson
Jenny Rapson is a follower of Christ, a wife and mom of three from Ohio and a freelance writer and editor. You can find her at her blog, Mommin' It Up, or follow her on Twitter.