In the fable of Hercules and the Wagoner, first recorded by Babrius in the first century AD, the story is told of a wagon that fell into a ravine. When the driver appealed to Hercules for help, he was told to fix it himself. This, and other similar stories, gave birth to the common teaching, “God helps those who help themselves.”
Of course, it is true that God also helps those who cannot help themselves. But in recovery, it is a partnership. I love the AA phrase, “Without God, you can’t; without you, God won’t.”
A pastor’s young boy asked him, “Daddy, I notice every Sunday morning, when you first come out to preach, you sit up on the platform and bow your head. What are you doing?”
The father explained, “I’m asking the Lord to give me a good sermon.”
The boy responded, “Why doesn’t he?”
In preaching sermons, fixing one’s wagon – and recovery – we must pray as though it all depends upon God, then work as though it all depends upon us. The Bible says, “The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied” (Proverbs 13:14).
Recovery Step: If your wagon is in the ditch, you can sit there and just ask God to dig it out. Or you can join him in the process. Get your shovel and get to work.