Without My Helper

Recently, my Utility Task Vehicle (UTV) had to go to the repair shop for a driveline problem. Being without my “helper” meant morning chores took much longer and required more effort than usual. Not only did I fill the multiple buckets with feed, but I had to tote them out to the feeding areas for the livestock. This meant several trips to and from the workshop where I store the feed; carrying feed-laden buckets each trip. Once poured out, the return trip wasn’t as difficult, but for an old guy with coronary artery disease, morning feedings required more sublingual nitro than usual.

Maneuvering across uneven pastures with a 35-pound bucket of feed in each hand required periodic breaks. The problem with stopping was two-fold. First, the cows thought they should come eat right out of the buckets. Two, I then had to contend with hungry cows pushing on me to get a mouthful of food through the rest of the journey. Alas, a rancher’s life; we do what’s needed to get the job done.

As I was walking back from feeding the donkeys, the longest trip of the morning, I stopped and shared a thought. Lord, I’ve sure walked a lot of this old earth in my days. I’m so glad You’re always with me. During my rest, I thanked God for having always been present in my life.

I reckoned it was God who saved me from an abusive childhood. It was God who kept me safe in the military, even though I had turned away from Him during much of that time. During those heart-wrenching days following my divorce, it was God crying out in my soul to turn back to Him. I thought about how many times He’s been there for me; and I lamented hardening my heart toward Him repeatedly. Standing there catching my breath, with a nitro under my tongue, I recalled Stephen’s words in Acts 7:51.

As stiff-necked as I’ve been in my life, God has never abandoned me. Since my salvation, I am certain I’ve grieved the Holy Spirit much more than I realize. Yet, The Helper that Christ promised in John 14:16 has never abandoned me. With that thought, I offered a prayer of thanksgiving and praise for His faithfulness to help me find my way back to the path He planned for my life.

In what ways do you seek the Holy Spirit’s help each day? Click To Tweet

That evening, I thought about how my UTV saves me lots of extra effort around the ranch. I thought about how my spiritual helper, the Holy Spirit, saves me lots of regret and keeps me on track. He’s the one who often shuts my mouth before I spew whatever nonsense pops into my head. It is the Holy Spirit that helps me delve into God’s word during my studies, so I find a deeper meaning. When led to extend a kindness, do the right thing, or make decisions that align with the teachings of God’s word, that’s the Holy Spirit at work in my life.

Unlike my UTV, my spiritual Helper is not an “on demand” tool; He is a person who can be a constant companion if you allow Him. The Holy Spirit is not your loud Uncle Larry, who ensures no one can ignore him at every family gathering. Rather, to ensure His presence, you must remember two things. Invite Him to take part in your life; and live your life in a manner that He’ll want to participate in. Too often, we don’t remember that second part.

I’ve found that asking the Holy Spirit to walk with me throughout the day yields wonderful results. He not only orders my steps, but He controls and guides my thoughts. It’s becoming easier for me to yield to His guidance than recovering from my mistakes when I rely on my carnal, human spirit. I pray you also find more ways to yield to His guidance throughout your day as God orders your steps through this life.

God’s blessings,



Please join me each Thursday evening at 9:30 Eastern as host Coach Mark Prasek and I take a trip Around the Cross-Dubya. We discuss this week’s blog post, offer insight about the lessons learned, and enjoy the fellowship of friends in the live chat room.


44 thoughts on “Without My Helper”

  1. That’s just beautiful J.D. I cannot imagine how anyone who doesn’t know and have a relationship with God gets through one hour much less one day without relying on Him through the Holy Spirit. What a blessing!!

  2. My friend, you have reminded me of many things that I have failed to thank my Lord for in recent weeks. I, too, am continually grateful that the Holy Spirit helps me keep my mouth shut when I don’t have something positive to say in a situation. That’s a lesson that took me many years, much praying, and a great deal of patience on the part of the Holy Spirit (I was a slow learner). I’m continually thankful that God provides us with those lessons from His creation. Whenever I’m outside, whether walking for meditation and fitness or working on the farm, God sends those snippets of wisdom and I’m so blessed when my heart and mind opens to His message. Thank you, J.D., for this message of inspiration and hope.

    1. Same here Ms. Katherine. My mouth is still a WIP, but if I can become just a little bit better each day, then I’ll eventually make it. Our God is so faithful. I exactly what you mean about meditating when out in nature. I think it’s the best way, because almost all other distractions are removed. It seems the birds, other animals, and all of nature works in unison with God to bring our spirit’s together.

  3. What a beautiful post filled with personal honesty and Biblical truth. I admit after I read the title, I paused at “a driveline problem”. I know very little about mechanical issues related to vehicles, but Helper and Driveline spoke to me. The Holy Spirit should be what drives my words, thought, actions, decisions…life. Thanks for writing.

    1. Oh I love that connection and wordplay Ms. Marilyn. Wish I had thought of that connection my friend. Then again, your thoughts are a perfect example of what fellowship brings. I never thought about how the Holy Spirit DRIVES our spiritual growth forward. And because you may not be as mechanically inclined as I am, that’s that a driveline does (it connects the engine to the wheels (ala transmission, driveshafts, axles, etc.) to make a vehicle move. 🙂 Thank you for the blessing sweet friend.

  4. Evelyn Mason Wells

    Thank you for sharing this post. It is a great reminder to thank my “Helper” during the day. Thank God, He is always with me sustaining me, loving me, and bringing me joy!

    1. I’m so pleased you enjoyed Ms. Evelyn. That moment was, for me, a wonderful reminder to praise God for His constant presence in my life. I’m awful glad He’s with you always too ma’am.

  5. Ole friend, you hit the nail on the head when you said we often forget to “invite” the Holy Spirit to be a part of the walk we are on each day. It is so easy to get all wrapped around the axle when we want to get something done, we forget to invite the one that sustains to go along with us.

    Thanks my friend,

    1. We sure can get so “wrapped up in our days” that we forget to ask God to be with us, or recognize His presence in the midst of them. Well said my friend. Thank you and God’s blessings Mr. Monty.

  6. The Holy Spirit is a faithful guide always, if we allow Him to do His job. So thankful to have Him living in me, and helping me do what is right in God’s eyes.
    Do hope you get that UTV fixed soon, J. D.! A ranch needs that kind of helper. 🙂

    1. My UTV is back from the shop, and while the reason it went to the shop (for two weeks!) isn’t fully corrected, for the cost to repair it, I’m going to run it till the wheels fall off Ms. Martha. LOL Thank you for your great comments ma’am. We so need our Helper to be with us each day ma’am.

  7. Hello, J.D. I’m so grateful our Helper is a constant companion and that He has been with us no matter our heart condition–obedient or otherwise. Praying blessings for you today.

    Peace and grace,

    1. Thank you Ms. Melissa. I can’t imaging living my life without Him my friend. How did we ever survive until we invited God into our lives? His mercy and grace is the only answer I can find. 🙂

  8. We need to get your helper back to helpin’! What lovely and powerful observations you made toting that bucket across the field. I’m thankful He was with you all those days… and today. You bless us, friend.

    1. Me too Ms. Cathy. That was a tough two weeks for me. Perhaps though, it’s what prompted me to seek medical treatment for my worsening heart condition, so God made something good from it.

  9. Like this analogy, J.D. It is our choice to allow the Holy Spirit to be our constant companion and not an “on demand” tool in our lives. Love that He is comforter, reveals truth, directs our steps, and so many things.

    1. Thank you Ms. Karen. That was my take-away from this whole adventure. I have to be sure and invite His presence each day and I have to make a conscious effort to keep Him center in my life by following His guidance over it.

  10. Wonderful reminder, J.D. I loved your story about the cows because I also love cows. I had one I “adopted” who lived in a pasture I drove by every day. I named her Cowsie! There’s nothing more satisfying than watching cows peacefully roam around the hills. And there’s nothing more spiritually satisfying than walking out life with the Holy Spirit, our Comforter and Teacher. Blessings, dear friend.

    1. Yes ma’am. I can lose all track of time when I’m out there fussing with my babies. With 100+ degree temperatures this week, you can be sure I’m watching them carefully; ensuring they have lots of water, etc. Of course, I have the big 48-inch fan running for them too. They’re not “too pampered.” 😀

  11. I smiled at the image of the cows trying to eat from the buckets as you moved along. Another inspiring post, Mr. J.D. I agree that we often need to be mindful of living a life that makes Him want to be more involved.

    1. Oh that’s a sight to see for sure Ms. Robin. If you’ve never had a cow stick out her tongue and wrap it around your whole hand an pull it into your mouth, you’ve missed out on an experience for sure. 🙂 Some days, my entire arm is covered with cow slobber when I hand feed a few of them. LOL Now for those buckets. Imagine carrying them and a 1,200 lb. mama cow pushes on you and puts her head in the bucket. All you can do is sit it down on the ground. And then pick it up and start walking again in between bites. LOL

    1. I think that’s because Hs is in everything Ms. Candyce. It’s all His creation, so it makes sense that He’s in there. 🙂 Thank you for all your kindness and encouragement ma’am. I love that you are on this journey with me my friend.

  12. JD, I’m so grateful for the Holy Spirit—especially when it comes to helping me keep quiet. On my own, I have let some ‘not so Holy’ words slip out.

    This post is a wonderful illustration on a Christian’s relationship with the Spirit of God.

    1. I’m with you there Ms. Beckie. Without His presence, I would be such a mess. I remember that guy; and I’m grateful every day that God saw fight to transform me into the man He wants me to be. I’ve got a very long way to go, but the longest journey is nothing more than a series of steps. 🙂 God’s blessings my gentle California friend.

  13. Guy and I know first hand how you depend on your UTV. Oh my, I’m sorry you were without and hope it was only for one day. I suggest you get a second one and go back and forth between the two. If one breaks down you’ve got another.
    But, to your point, I would hate to have to make it without THE Helper, the Holy Spirit. Minute by minute, we count on His presence, His guiding hand, His protection, His wisdom, on and on and on! I’m sure we cannot fathom His worth in our daily lives.
    You have reminded me to be grateful, again, and every day, and again, for God’s Spirit, among many things—The Helper.

    1. Yes ma’am. This is a lot of ranch to get around on by foot. I too often wonder how I ever made it without God in my life. I think that’s what hurts the most when I look at this world and I see so many who don’t know Him. It breaks my heart.

  14. How perfect the Lord knew and planned out that we would need the Holy Spirit in us to guide us along our daily travels in this world. Boy, I sure hope I keep asking Him each morning to be with me all throughout my day.
    Thank You Lord for giving us a most treasured gift. Thank you Holy Spirit for guiding and directing me steps! And thank you JD for sharing this message!

    1. Thanks “Honey Man.” While God’s salvation and His constant presence is the greatest gift we could ever receive, I thank Him too for my family and friends. It’s them who make this life palatable. Thanks for all your encouragement and support my friend.

  15. Don’t overdo, my friend. Maybe it’s time to bring on some young and strong muscles for a little extra help in addition to the help from the UTV and Bubba! Ask your spiritual helper, companion, friend, comforter, advocate, healer, and encourager (aka the Holy Spirit.) Oh, how I love to be in His presence. Speaking for and from the heart, take care of yourself. 😉 Thank you for your transparency. I enjoy getting to know you better.

    1. I’m so pleased you enjoyed Ms. Karen. Sometimes, I think I’m getting too old and too beat up for this ranching stuff, but oh how I love it so. I feel closer to God out here in nature than I ever have my friend. It’s worth it!

  16. A very good reminder of that great promise of Jesus – the Holy Spirit to be in and with us always. God in us. We are never alone.
    Hope you vehicle is back on the ranch and running well. Not sure you should be hauling 70 pounds of grain out to the pastures (Heart AND shoulders!!). Hey… harness up those donkeys. (Haha)

    1. LOL! I’ve thought about using Magic the donkey (he’s the larger of the two), but he would just walk around in circles trying to reach the bucket to get bite! 😀 Thanks so much for commenting ma’am. We are surely blessed to know the Holy Spirit is always present in our lives.

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