dependence jan 2014

Painting by Hilary Murdoch ©2014

As a paraglider depends totally on their parachute

To ensure they don’t fall;

As a boat depends totally on an anchor

To ensure it doesn’t float away;

As my body depends totally on water

To sustain health, growth, life;

As a plant depends totally on light.

As my lungs depend totally on oxygen;

Totally, utterly


Not just requesting a little help

Every now and again

An optional extra.

This is different

Without it I’m sunk

Without you I’m nothing.

But often I don’t act like it.

Do I really believe

I depend on you to that extent?

Do I lean my full weight on you God?

Trusting you fully like oxygen or a parachute?

Or do I carry my own weight

Under the illusion of independence?

But functioning under that illusion

That I am holding myself and others together

Is exhausting


Can I expose the illusion?

Dump the independence?

Embrace the reality

The peace

The comfort

The strength in weakness

The release

Of true dependence?

I want to.

God please help me

To ease my weight back into your arms


You won’t drop me.


You’ll do a better job

Than if I did it all myself.


That you’ll do immeasurably more.

The world says

Dependence is weakness


But it’s only foolish

If the person or thing you depend on

Might let you down

Or take advantage of you.

If they’re either

Not strong

Or not good.

But what if the person you choose to depend on

Is always 100% strong

Always 100% good

Will never let you down

Will never take advantage of you?

Then apparent foolishness becomes wisdom

The apparent weakness becomes strength.

I want that wisdom.

But my mind is still so soaked

In the world’s wisdom

That it’s hard for me to lean my full weight

And trust this seemingly illogical wisdom.

But there, in the choice to lean

Is where fullness of life lies.

That’s where the ‘immeasurably more’ happens

When his power is at work in us.

And then there’s control

The control which keeps a firm grip

And leaves little room for dependence on God.

It turns out I’m more controlling than I thought

And that makes all this talk of dependence uncomfortable

Let alone the active practice of it

Of letting go

Of trusting.

Admitting we need a parachute

Does not mean we are weaker than others

As if we could fall without one.

If we are all falling through life

Recognition and acceptance of a parachute

Is wisdom

Acknowledging the true situation.

Saying we don’t need one

Is remaining in denial

Dangerous denial.

But I slip into that denial so easily.

So now I want to climb out

Out of the denial

Into the reality

And seemingly illogical wisdom

Into the immeasurably more

Into the upside down strength

Of dependence

On you God.

Please show me how

Today, tomorrow

Show me how.

All poems and original writing on this blog is Copyright © Hilary Murdoch 2014

6 responses »

  1. Pingback: A rock amidst sinking sands | Mother City Murmurs

  2. Pingback: How to wait [The Grace of Waiting 4] | Mother City Murmurs

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s